GPL and Copyright Notification
Dave J Woolley
david.woolley at bts.co.uk
Tue Apr 17 10:30:48 UTC 2001
> From: August Zajonc [SMTP:augustz at bigfoot.com]
> Note: If this has been covered before, I'd be happy for a pointer to the
> proper list thread or FAQ.
This is GPL specific, so ought to be asked on the USENET
gnu.misc.discuss (?) group.
> Powered by MyCoolSoftware
IANAL but I believe that any requirement to include the above line
would be in breach of the GPL as it would be an additional
> Copyright 2001 MyCoolGroup
[DJW:] The GPL is founded on copyright, so it is essential that
the copyright ownership of any GPLed work is clear. Original
parts of a derived work remain the intellectual property of the
original author and they are the people that own the copyright of
On the other hand, this notice is misleading, as it implies that
using the software assigns the copyright of the discussion content,
which would be an additional constraint and not allowed. In most
cases, it seems to me that the FSF actually grant additional
permissions so that the equivalent of the generated web page is not
considered a derived work of the program.
As I understand it, in Europe, the original author has a legal
"moral right" to be identified as the author even if the copyright
is assigned, so attempting to hide the true origins of the code
might also breach a right that cannot be waived.
As I understand it, the requirement to display copyright notices
is inteded to insure that people realise the program is copyrighted
and are also made aware of the licence document. It may
well be acceptable to give a reference to the full list of coyright
You appear not to have met what is probably the most imporant
which is a pointer to the text of the GPL.
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