GPL with the Classpath exception - clarification needed

Alon von Bismark at
Sat Mar 28 13:58:51 UTC 2009

2009/3/28 John Cowan <cowan at>:
> Alon von Bismark scripsit:
>> and, by example, from § 101, that a derivative work encompasses ONLY
>> "editorial revisions, annotations, elaborations, or other
>> modifications, which, AS A WHOLE, represent an original work of
>> authorship"
> There is *NO SUCH* word "only" in § 101.

The first rule of statutory construction is "begin at the beginning"
(§ 101) and the second rule is "read on" (§ 102 and § 103). To quote

"Section 103(b) is also intended to define, more sharply and clearly
than does section 7 of the present law, the important
interrelationship and correlation between protection of preexisting
and of ‘new’ material in a particular work. The most important point
here is one that is commonly misunderstood today: copyright in a ‘new
version’ covers only the material added by the later author, and has
no effect one way or the other on the copyright or public domain
status of the preexisting material."



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