[License-discuss] Life cycle of a license with and without binary attribution clause
Mark.Gisi at windriver.com
Mon Feb 8 15:57:42 UTC 2016
>> is Company Bar required to reproduce the text of the license?
It is always best to consult with your legal counsel for precise guidance on your specific situation. Here is an Open Source Movement perspective of the problem:
The Movement is founded upon the principle of frictionless sharing of software. Open Source Licenses grant rights to seamlessly redistribute if certain basic conditions are met. Open Source developers offer their software under a given license (which represent their wishes). Some require source code redistribution (e.g., GPL) while others require attribution (BSD). It is in the best interest of the Movement that we honor those wishes whether they be source or an attribution.
The BSD license explicitly grants permissions to distribute binary code if the following attribution condition is met:
2. Redistributions in binary form **must reproduce** the above copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer in the documentation and/or other materials provided with the distribution.
This represents a requirement for *each* supplier in the supply chain. In order for each supplier to re-distribute the BSD licensed binary they too need to obtain permissions hence each *must reproduce* the notice to ensure they are granted that right. Similarly - If it was licensed under the GPL - one would expect each supplier to provide an offer for source in accordance with the GPL. The BSD license is analogous but instead with an attribution requirement.
>> b) If one was to take the BSD 3-clause license and remove its second clause:
Logically -> no rights will be grant (i.e., no permissions given) to distribute the software in binary form. The binary no longer can be share seamlessly.
From: License-discuss [mailto:license-discuss-bounces at opensource.org] On Behalf Of Zluty Sysel
Sent: Thursday, February 04, 2016 12:22 PM
To: license-discuss at opensource.org
Subject: [License-discuss] Life cycle of a license with and without binary attribution clause
I was wondering the following regarding attribution clauses in licenses like the BSD 3-clause and derivatives.
a) If Company Foo manufactures a product (think Integrated Circuit) that contains portions of software (say firmware in ROM) in binary form covered by the BSD license and then sells the product to a Company Bar that takes the chip and places it on a PCB inside an end-product that it then sells to the general public, is Company Bar required to reproduce the text of the license? In other words, is that still considered a redistribution of the original software in binary form, or is only Company Foo required to do that?
b) If one was to take the BSD 3-clause license and remove its second clause:
"2. Redistributions in binary form must reproduce the above copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer in the documentation and/or other materials provided with the distribution.”
what would happen then with binary redistributions of software covered by this modified BSD? Would they not be covered by any license at all? Would the binary executable or ROM be exempt from any type of restriction completely?
Thanks in advance.
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