selling GPL sources
btilly at gmail.com
Tue Sep 20 04:12:22 UTC 2005
On 9/19/05, Guilherme C. Hazan <guich at superwaba.com.br> wrote:
> Hi Ian,
> >> I'm aware of a program that uses the GPL license and the author made
> >> the binaries free but not the sources. He asks a fee for the sources
> >> (about 100usd).
> >> Is this legal or is he infringing the GPL license?
> > The GPL permits "a charge no more than your cost of physically
> > performing source distribution." If his cost is 100USD or greater,
> > than he is not infringing. If his cost is less than 100USD, then he
> > is infringing.
> Sorry, isnt the opposite? If it is 100 or less, then its ok, otherwise,
> if is more than 100, then is illegal?
Ian had it right the first time. If he is charging $100 and his costs
are $1000, then he is charging no more than his cost of physically
performing source distribution. If he is charging $100 and his costs
are $10, then he is charging more than his cost of physically
performing source distribution.
By the way, as far as I know nothing stops someone from choosing to
distribute source in a particularly expensive and inconvenient way, as
long as it is on a medium customarily used for software interchange.
For instance I might send a stack of CDs, each of which has 5 bytes of
source code. If I have a reasonable amount of source code, this could
become prohibitively expensive indeed!
Of course once one person has received the source, they are free to
re-release in a more convenient form.
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