I'm writing software for a "closed" embedded device. I want to use fonts licensed under the Apache 2.0 license in it. I know it's legal to do that, but I'm stumbling over this text from the license:

You must give any other recipients of the Work or Derivative Works a copy of this License;

I'm thinking about hosting the license on our company's website and print a link to our copy of the license in the paper user's guide we distribute with the hardware.

Would that be enough?

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    Since you are using fonts, I assume that you have some UI of sorts. Are you extremely spaced-constrained on this device to the point that including the text of the Apache license would be problematic? Oct 18 '17 at 7:03
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    @PhilippeOmbredanne: For all we know, the device might easily be a printer of sorts (regular printer, or for labels/price tags) without any display. Hopefully, the author returns to answer. Oct 23 '17 at 11:41
  • Do you mean that you'll be using text displayed in those fonts (such as on a web page) or you'll be including the font files for generation of new text on/from your device?
    – freginold
    Oct 23 '17 at 20:07

Conventionally, most copyright holders would consider that adequate if you include a copy of the license in the users' guide (and not just a link). The intent of that clause is to make sure that downstream users are aware of their rights to the licensed material.

To fulfill the letter of the requirement, you should also bundle the license in the program files, even though the user has no way to access the file.

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    Do you have any evidence for "most copyright holders would consider that adequate"? I'd be a little surprised if it were so, since it's an explicit violation of the actual licence terms. The OP is giving out a users' guide with every device shipped, so it's not like (s)he's short of an opportunity to fulfil the terms to the letter.
    – MadHatter
    Oct 23 '18 at 19:17
  • Oh, I just realized that he said a link in the user's guide, not a full copy of the license. Amending my answer per your comment, thanks! Oct 23 '18 at 20:00
  • Ah, I see. Glad to help, and I have much less in the way of bones to pick with your answer now. One remains, though: why do you feel that a full paper copy of the licence fails to satisfy Apache2 s4a? I see no requirement that the licence copy be part of the program files.
    – MadHatter
    Oct 24 '18 at 5:04
  • It does if they can make sure that the paper copy stays with the hardware. However, HW is often redistributed, and redistributors are not good about paper. Having a digital copy of the license in the firmware files -- however buried -- is a good CYA against any accusations of not including the license. Oct 24 '18 at 16:49
  • For the OP: the reason why a link to the license in your user's guide isn't adequate is that your website could vanish or move. Oct 24 '18 at 16:51

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