Dynamic linking, was: Re: Dispelling BSD License Misconceptions
matthew.flaschen at gatech.edu
Tue Jan 30 01:15:23 UTC 2007
Ben Tilly wrote:
> On 1/28/07, Matthew Flaschen <matthew.flaschen at gatech.edu> wrote:
>> Ben Tilly wrote:
>> > In my opinion it should be a judgement call based on how closely
>> > connected your code is with the design of GNU readline. Remember that
>> > copyright is not just intended to apply to literal copying. For
>> > instance if I write a short story and Mickey Mouse appears in it, I'm
>> > going to hear from Disney's lawyers.
>> Yes, but probably on trademark grounds.
> On every grounds they can get, *including* copyright.
They might consider it copyright infringement, but I don't think a judge
would (if you did nothing more then mention Mickey in the story)
> In fact I chose that example specifically for good reason. Disney is
> famous for caring about the copyright that they have on Mickey Mouse.
> So much so that on multiple occasions they have successfully lobbied
> for copyright law to be changed so that they can continue to maintain
> that copyright.
True, but that's mainly to prevent full-scale copying of the original
(now quite valuable) cartoons.
>> Even though I have not copied
>> > anything exact, I can still be derivative of it. Likewise if my code
>> > makes liberal use of ideas and memes created by GNU readline, there is
>> > an argument that I'm derivative of realine regardless of whether I
>> > link.
>> Ideas and memes alone shouldn't be enough to create a derivative work
>> under copyright law.
> My understanding (as a non-lawyer) is that copyright law protects my
> creative expression.
That's exactly my point. I can take your ideas without infringing your
copyright, as long as I ignore your expression.
> Nothing stops them from creating an equivalent framework from scratch.
Unless it happens to be patented.
>> > Of course my opinion is influenced by having read
>> > http://linuxmafia.com/faq/Kernel/proprietary-kernel-modules.html in
>> > detail and then having thought about how the changing richness of the
>> > Linux kernel module API has changed Linus' opinions about when a
>> > binary module is a derived work of the Linux kernel. (And why.)
>> That is a quite interesting compilation.
> It is. And it gives a lot of insight into how Linus thinks about this
> issue. Of course I have no idea of what a lawyer would think about
> his thinking...
Yes, and in some cases he's clearly wrong. In the beginning when he
asserts that the LGPL applies de facto...simply because he considers
some kernel routines libraries.
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