At 12:22 -0400 2000.09.11, Ben Tilly wrote:
>> >2. Freely Available is too vague. Is it freely available if
>> > I release my changes in a form with a copyright notice
>> > saying (like Sun does) that you need to submit all of your
>> > changes to my changes back to me? (Under the definition in
>> > the AL, yes.)
>>If you can asnwer that question, then how can you say it is too vague?
>Because vagueness has led to being overly permissive.
That does not answer my question. You say it is too vague, but then go on
to assert what it means. It is not vague. "Freely Available" is very
specifically defined. There is nothing vague about it.
>Take a look at how Microsoft "released" the changes that they
>made to Kerebos. Would releasing a changed version of Perl
>under a BS license like that violate the understood spirit of
>what the AL is supposed to protect? To my understanding it
"Freely Available" in the Artistic License is never once used to refer to
the Package, but is only used to refer to modifications to the Package. So
yes, that would violate the license, in letter and spirit.
>> >3. I think 3d should simply be "other arrangements." Should a
>> > consultant build a custom version of Perl for someone else,
>> > distribution might not ever be an issue for either, yet they
>> > may wish permission to modify.
>>That use is already covered under 3b. The consultant is working for the
>>organization in question at the time of the work for hire, and it therefore
>>falls under "your organization." Or you could flip it around, and say that
>>the corporation itself is "you." Either way it is fine and covered under
>If the consultant is an employee of a consulting firm I do
>not know whether that argument would fly.
Yes, it would. It is a work for hire. The consulting firm itself would
not have any rights to the work, only the organization hiring the
>> >4) The permission for 4a) should only cover distributing the
>> > standard version.
>>It explicitly only does.
>No, but I think that is an oversight.
>If you distribute two versions together, one of which is the
>standard, you have indeed done "...at least ONE of the
>following..." and therefore your distribution is legal.
Not if they are released in the same "distribution." That is, they must be
discrete distributions, or else it is not the Standard Version anymore.
>Of course not. But if your distribution INCLUDES the Standard
>Version then by my reading the distribution is legal.
As long as they are discrete entities, yes. I don't understand the problem
there. But that does not include your scenario, where you think you are
installing perl, but are installing something else. That simply is not
allowed by the language of the license, by the definitions of Standard
Version and Package.
>"distribute a Standard Version". You are doing that.
No, because in this case the Package HAS been modified, through addition.
That's the point.
>If it went to court I would not want to bet on your interpretation
>winning over mine.
Mine follows the actual words of the license, though. So I wouldn't be
>> > Combined with an abuse of 3a), this could allow some nasty
>> > games to be played...
>>What abuse of 3a? If you distribute under section 3, you must make
>>prominent what modifications you've made. How can that be abused?
>See Sun's Community Source License. By reading the changes
>you are bound by a nasty license giving them rights to
>demand all sorts of crap from you. Should distribution of
>machine readible modifications with such a license attached to
>decoding and reading them (which could, incidentally, make you
>ineligible to contribute back to Perl) be acceptable?
Of course. If you want copyleft, you know where to find it ...
>interfere with the original author's artistic control?
Of course not. The author does not assert artistic control over
third-party modifications released separately from any distribution of the
Package, which is what 3a covers.
>> >5) I think that 4b is too dangerous. Both Microsoft and Sun
>> > have played licencing games where you can see but not touch.
>> > Machine readable source that is combined with restrictive
>> > licensing does not meet the intent. The purpose of this
>> > section is to allow ports. (eg Macperl.) I think this
>> > should have added that it must be distributed on the same
>> > licensing terms as the original.
>>The Package must ALWAYS be distributed under the same licensing terms as
>>the original. Unless it is public domain or you are the copyright holder,
>>you cannot change the licensing terms. I am not sure what your point is,
>>maybe I am missing it.
>If I modify Perl I am now a copyright holder on my modifications
>and I can distribute the alternate version with a license of my
>choosing on my bits.
The entire Package is still subject to the original license. You cannot
>All software comes with an implicit warranty that must be
>explicitly disclaimed. Which is why virtually all software
>comes with an explicit disclaimer.
But you are not allowed to, legally, use the software if you don't agree to
the warranty. So if you use it, you agree to the license, and you have a
warranty. If you don't use it, the lack of warranty is irrelevant. Anyone
who claimed in court that they refused the license and were suing because
of the implied warranty which was never disclaimed would open himself up to
immediate countersuit on illegal use of the software. It just isn't a
>>At 10:52 -0400 2000.09.11, Ben Tilly wrote in "Can we ignore licensing?":
>> >Suppose I buy a copy of Perl on a CD. Under copyright law it
>> >is fair use for me to resell that copy at *any* price I want.
>> >That contradicts item 6 of the AL.
>>You mean section 5? No, it does not. I don't see why you say that it
>Sorry, section 5. Which says you cannot charge for the package.
>And cannot charge an "unreasonable fee".
Do you mean selling perl, by itself, on a CD? I thought you meant perl
with other things on a CD, which is a different issue. Well, if someone is
stupid enough to buy it, then that's their problem. I can kinda see your
point, though I am not sure of your interpretation of the copyright law,
but it is irrelevant, since with the advent of the Internet, anyone who
pays an exorbitant amount for a CD with just perl on it deserves what he
>> >Incidentally items 3d and 4d effectively cannot be met if you
>> >have many copyright holders (which Perl does).
>>No, Larry is the Copyright Holder:
>> "Copyright Holder" is whoever is named in the copyright or
>> copyrights for the package.
>> "Package" refers to the collection of files distributed by the
>> Copyright Holder, and derivatives of that collection of files
>> created through textual modification.
>>Copyright Holder refers to the copyright holder for the _package_ itself,
>>not the individual pieces of it.
>Copyright Holder is well-defined under law, and Perl may not
>arbitrarily redefine it.
Yes, it can. It can define anything in any way it wants to, as long as it
is up front about it. Think macros. Whenever you see Copyright Holder in
the AL, it means "whoever is named in the copyright or copyrights for the
collection of files distributed by the Copyright Holder, and derivatives of
that collection of files created through textual modification." Hm, I
guess that is kinda recursive, but it still works. :-) There is no legal
problem with the AL defining the term. It would be perfectly legal for me
to have "Legal Document" defined at the top of my license as "any document
written on legal size paper." As lon as I define it up front, it is OK.
>In addition Author says:
> Larry Wall <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>, with the help of oodles of
> other folks.
>Under copyright law all of those oodles of other folks have
>copyrights on the code and Larry cannot legally speak for
The Artistic License deals with the Package as a whole, not to its
individual pieces, which may in some cases have separate licensing terms.
If you are going to contact the Copyright Holder under the provisions of
sections 3d and 4d, it would only be in reference to the Package as a
whole, for which the stated Copyright Holder has complete authority to
rule. If you don't like it, you should not allow the Copyright Holder to
include your code in their distribution. There is an implicit agreement
Chris Nandor [EMAIL PROTECTED] http://pudge.net/
Open Source Development Network [EMAIL PROTECTED] http://osdn.com/