"Derivative Work" for Software Defined

Brian Behlendorf brian at collab.net
Fri Jan 17 03:39:52 UTC 2003

On Thu, 16 Jan 2003, Lawrence E. Rosen wrote:
> > Can someone clear up the difference between "mere
> > aggregation" and a "collective work"?
> As far as I can tell, a "mere aggregation" IS a "collective work."  The
> former term has no meaning in the copyright law.

OK, so I thought the GPL distinguished between the two - that having a GPL
program (I'm not thinking of the kernel here or other things reasonably
determined to be part of an "operating system", an allowance the GPL
makes) on the same CD as non-GPL bits, in a situation such as a Red Hat
Linux CD, was OK because it was "mere aggregation", which the GPL
explicitly allows, and not a "collective work", which the GPL states
*would* be under the GPL.  Maybe "mere aggregation" has no meaning w/r/t
copyright law, but am I mistaken in thinking the GPL makes the


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