On a project I noticed that it has a
LICENSE file, apparently put in place as template when the project was initialized by Github. The file contains the standard GPLv2 template but no copyright notice. None of the source files include a copyright header. There is no copyright notice anywhere to be found. Neither any reference to its contributors. With all sorts of licenses I'm use to seeing at least a statement like this in the
LICENSE file header:
Copyright (c) 2019 contibutors. All rights reserved.
Furthermore, the GPLv2 text does not refer to "files in this repository", "directory" or "folder". Only article 0 of the GPLv2 clearly states:
0. This License applies to any program or other work which contains a notice placed by the copyright holder saying it may be distributed under the terms of this General Public License.
This would lead to my conclusion that the GPLv2 license is not applied to anything in the project.
I've seen many questions on the SE network, where developers are asking if they should include a copyright header. Usually they are advised to do so. However my question is the reverse: If I'm to copy or link this project, which lacks any copyright claim, into a non-GPL project, would that be copyright infringement?
Please note: I have no evil intentions. This question is hypothetical and depending on the outcome of this question, I will probably notify the author of the library to rectify the copyright if needed. I've already decided on re-writing the library from the ground up, to better suit my needs