[License-discuss] [License-review] CC withdrawl of CC0 from OSI process

Chris Travers chris at metatrontech.com
Fri Mar 2 05:09:28 UTC 2012

On Thu, Mar 1, 2012 at 8:40 PM, Bruce Perens <bruce at perens.com> wrote:
> On 03/01/2012 08:32 PM, Chris Travers wrote:
>> I am not at all sure that line works once you get into trying to bridge
>> GPL'd and proprietary apps
> Read
> http://www.datamation.com/osrc/article.php/3801396/Bruce-Perens-Combining-GPL-and-Proprietary-Software.htm
>> Does it matter how I do this?
> Very definitely.
>> Is it possible to accidently create a derivative work in the process?
> If you don't know what to do, you probably will, because the easiest ways do
> create them are the ones that are more legally risky. However, it's not
> terribly hard to build stuff in the more safe ways.
>> What do I have to avoid on a technical level (because I am thinking
>> technically when programming, not legally) to be sure I am safe?
> It's in the article, at least for a number of general cases.


The questions above were rhetorical.  Now that we agree that the above
questions I asked are valid questions.....

I notice you say "Don't assume that you can put proprietary kernel
drivers in a run-time loadable kernel module. The legality of such a
practice is dubious, and there have not been sufficient cases to say
reliably what would happen if you were to get sued," which comes back
down to the linking question.  You seem to say "do not link" and thus
repeat more or less what the FSF says (and what Rosen spends a good
time arguing against in his book, and he is by no means alone--- at
least in any law review articles I have been able to find and read the
overall trend is overwhelmingly against seeing linking as having much
to do with derivation).

So this gets to the problem that I think we are both trying to solve,
which seems to be a fools errand:  giving an engineering answer to a
legal question.  My sense (as a non-lawyer) is that communications
from a project are very much likely to affect the scope of the
license, and that downstream developers are likely to be able to
reasonably rely on communications from a project that some practices
are safe in their eyes.  So this is where the discussions help.

Best Wishes,
Chris Travers

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