Multi-license - won't it conflict?

John Cowan cowan at
Sun Apr 17 18:51:50 UTC 2011

M.I.Z Khalid scripsit:

> I'm a little concerned AND in doubt about how a SINGLE GPLe'd program
> can carry a COMMERCIAL license. My specific questions are:
> 1. Where does it indicate in the GPL v3, that only the original
> copyright owner can issue a dual license?
> 2. This may be answered above but if not, where does the GPL v3
> prevent a forked project or redistribution being issued ALONG with a
> commercial license BY A DEVELOPER, who is NOT the original copyright
> owner?

A license is an action by the owner that gives someone else certain
rights.  For example, say I own a house, and I've hired you to mow my
lawn.  I tell you, "When you're finished, come in and have a beer".
That's a license.  George passes by the house, and I tell him, "When
you're done, come in and have a beer."  That's another license.  You
can't possibly complain because I hand out one license to you and a
different one to George, even though yours is conditional (on your
finishing the lawn) and his is not.  Now Alice comes by and you say,
"Hey Alice, come in and have a beer."  Does Alice have a valid license?
Of course not -- it's not your house.

With techies, I've generally found              John Cowan
If your arguments lose the first round
    Make it rhyme, make it scan                 cowan at
    Then you generally can
Make the same stupid point seem profound!           --Jonathan Robie

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