On Sun, 12 Feb 2006 14:18:22 +0100, David Kastrup <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> Graham Murray <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> writes:
>> David Kastrup <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> writes:
>>> Graham Murray <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> writes:
>>>> For example you borrow from the library a book which comes with a CD
>>>> containing GPL'd software. Under the terms of the GPL are you not
>>>> entitled to make a copy of that software before returning the book
>>>> and CD to the library? You do not need the library's (owner of the
>>>> physical copy you copied) permission to do so.
>>> Not?  You mean, I can just walk into a library and start scanning with
>>> a hand scanner or a digital camera from media that happen to contain
>>> public domain material, without actually borrowing the stuff out?
>> No I am not suggesting that at all. What I am suggesting is that I
>> can borrow a book from the library and once it is in my possession I
>> can do with it anything allowed by copyright law.
> Because a library is a special agency, with special rules fixed in
> special laws.

I don't think it is necessary to argue that the library is special.
The library owns books and allows access to them as they choose.  There 
are only a few provisions of copyright law that are triggered by
owning a copy and the ones of interest here don't apply to books.
No license or permission of any kind is allowed to exercise fair use
just as no license is required to read a book.  Fair use is copying done 
without permission.

For copying software you need something more than sufficient legal
access.  You also need a license because fair use does not provide
sufficient rights to copy the software.

I'm not sure whether I agree that you have to own a copy of GPL
software to be a licensee, but I don't think the library analogy goes
very far to resolve the issue.  I don't believe you have the right
to copy your employers CDs just because you have access to them no
matter what happens to be on them.

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