On Fri, Apr 24, 2009 at 4:29 AM, Stephen J. Turnbull <stephen(a)xemacs.org> wrote:
SL Baur writes:
> We've been very strict about GPL licensing. Every bit
> of code that went in in my watch *WAS* GPL.
But you have no paper to prove it. Your testimony would count in
court, but I doubt it would stand up to a Darryl McBride waving an
employment contract that one of our contributors had signed.
??? Do you mean Darl McBride of SCO? He lost it all.
Otherwise, you lost me. Who is Darryl McBride?
> I would also argue that any bit of Emacs Lisp code is
> a derived work and hence GPL
Nope. You can attack that on two grounds. First, the FSF claims it
*is* a derived work, but that depends on the legal theory that dynamic
linking infects the source code which does not contain a copy of any
GPLed work. Many lawyers disagree, and it has *never* been tested in
court. Personally, I think if it were, the GPL would become
redundant, because the court would decide that legally it means the
same thing as the LGPL. But that's just an opinion.
Roses are red
Violets are blue
I am confused
and so are you
I'm not talking about linking. I'm talking about Emacs
Lisp designed to be loaded into the XEmacs editor.
Do you think that someone could invent a web browser
implemented in Emacs Lisp, distribute it and get away
with only supplying .elcs and no source code?
I do not.
And continuing on the example above, in the SPECIFIC
case of dynamically linked .sos with XEmacs, I think they
are also derived works and must be considered GPL.
Second, the GPL quite clearly disclaims any such thing as an
GPLing of a work. If you distribute a GPL derivative without GPLing
it, then you lose all your GPL rights to the original. But your work
does not become GPL unless you say so, with the consequence that if
you don't, both you and all your downstream must stop redistributing
those parts of the work that are yours.
I disagree. But then, I am not a lawyer, nor have I paid a
lawyer to give me an opinion on this issue.
> We have CVS dating back to 1995. We ought to be
> able to identify and remove the naughty bit (Ben Wing,
> et. al.) contributions since then and remove them as
> far as the manual goes.
I don't think that's worth it. If that's necessary we may as well
just nuke it and start from scratch. But if we're going to start
over, I'd prefer to use a system like doxygen or whatever and blow off
the FSF manuals, instead working from the FSF docstrings (and GPLing
our manuals in the process).
It shouldn't be necessary, though. Ben has not been in touch for
years, but he has always been happy to relicense to anything that
would be useful. He also offered to assign all his documentation
stuff to the FSF if they would let us use GFDLed Emacs docs under the
nameless license. Stallman was a mild jerk about it (ie, he
reiterated his usual demand that the FSF review every line proposed
for relicensing), Ben got huffy, and then it was a contest to see who
could be the bigger jerk until Stallman said "No docs for XEmacs or
anybody who looks like you!"
If Ben had been "happy to relicense" anything that would
be useful, why was he so adamant with me when I was
trying to make peace with Stallman?
As far as rewriting the docs goes, can't you just take a
snapshot of the time when the FSF docs were license
compatible and create a new document while relicensing
the XEmacs-specific bits?
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