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9

"Fair use" is the legal doctrine in the United States that says sometimes use of copyrighted material without permission is "fair" and allowed. The author of this op-ed is concerned that Google had a very weak fair use case, but won the case anyway: Google won a verdict that an unauthorized, commercial, competitive, harmful use of software in billions of ...


8

You should not include keys in your open source project. You should include a file location where your code expects a key, and the user (or an included utility) creates or copies their own unique key into the expected location. Imagine a thousand people download your project and stand up their own versions of your open-source server -- what's the point of ...


7

Let's ignore the fact for the moment that there is a license in play, let's focus on copyright. When a new work is created, the creator is the copyright holder, except when it is a work for hire, and the hiring company is the copyright holder. When a derived work is created, you have two copyright holders: The copyright holder of the original work, and ...


7

Just to make it clear, the Appeals court's May 9th, 2014 decision in Oracle vs Google apply made it clear that the structure, sequence and organization (SSO) of the 37 API interfaces Google had copied (in order to make existing software that was based on the copyrighted Oracle JDK work with Android) was subject to copyright. This is not new case law, but ...


6

If all that was done was to use the API without including any of Telegram's code (not even header files) in the application, traditionally the answer would have been that nothing needs to be published since nothing subject to the GPL would be included in the application. Depending on rulings in the Oracle v. Google case, that answer may change. If actual ...


6

If you are the only author, you can even do stuff that isn't allowed by GPL for others. But for an API-key I would even see this as configurable data used by the program and that is not delivered with the software (similarily OSS e-mail-programs usually don't contain the email-login of the developer). Instead you should deliver a manual how everyone can ...


6

Yes you can push a project without publishing the API key. Developers do it all the time. Make sure you have prominent documentation explaining how other developers can acquire/install their own API key and make sure your source code detects a missing key and provides a helpful error message. If you're using git, you can use a .gitignore file to prevent ...


5

GPL is a very strong copyleft license. Part of this strength stems from the claim from the FSF that mere linking (even dynamic linking) with a library creates a derivative work of the library and thus the GPL restricts the licensing options for this derivative. This allows the FSF to propose a distinct lighter license (the LGPL) that allows this kind of ...


4

The impact is simple to state and impossible to quantify. Open source implementations that include copies of copyrighted APIs may constitute infringement. This is not a common case. Many common APIs are explicitly licensed permissively. So, for example, an API published under the GPL could preclude a GPL-incompatible implementation unless the copyright ...


4

Your specific question seems to be: Is it legal to publish the project under open source license excluding the key? The answer is clearly: "yes". I don even have an idea why anyone should think otherwise, but there is nothing in the open source licensing model that invalidates your use of the license if you exclude the API license key (or any other ...


4

If it is your project and doesn't include any external code, you can do what you want with it. You can release it with a license that only allows near-sighted monkeys to use it while hanging from a tree. You can even publish the source under dozens of different licenses, each contradicting all others. The license is only important if you gave the code to ...


3

There is definitively need for qualified legal advise here, since this is about business of your company, that money and reputation could be at stake, and that local laws and interpretation might apply. You should not rely on internet forum for this. This being said, I'm not a lawyer, and here my understanding as a simple software practitioner: If you ...


3

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer and this is not legal advice. A port to another language is a translation, and, a translation is considered a derivative work, which means the original copyright (whatever it is) applies (e.g. if you have limited rights to the original so do you to the translation). As GPL2 is copyleft license, you must reproduce the full ...


3

If you own the copyright, yes you can. The GPL is a document that you use to grant rights to the users of your software. You grant them the right to use it if they follow the conditions. It cannot force you to do anything.


3

TL;DR Yes, you can use a permissive Open Source license for this wrapper program, but not a strong copyleft Open Source license. First, to clear up something that has been raised in comments: As it is written I do not believe your question is about reverse engineering a non-free C library. You say: I am working on python library that wraps a non-free C ...


2

To begin I cite the Wikipedia about the definition of API: In computer programming, an application programming interface (API) is a set of routines, protocols, and tools for building software applications. An API expresses a software component in terms of its operations, inputs, outputs, and underlying types. So, the if file format describes how ...


2

This is something that has been decided in US courts at least, and has been discussed in several places here and here: APIs are copyrighted but in some case using them can be fair use. So whichever way you go and end up building some piece of software that implements this API you may end at some level infringing on the copyright. It does not matter IMHO ...


1

First off all you are not violating copyright by making a copy of the API. The API and its description are licensed to you - and to the public in general, as far as I can tell* - under GLP2. *: It is possible to sell these licenses. I only know your company has one. Now, will your company be the copyright holder of the new project? Yes. Although, it is ...


1

The (A)GPL license is a strong copyleft license. This means that if an application contains code licensed under the (A)GPL license, then the entire application must be licensed under terms that are compatible with the (A)GPL. This includes any modification/customization you made. The main exception is if the application consists of multiple distinct parts ...


1

This is an interesting question. I have tried to browse through the https://www.midi.org/ (Trademark policy, IP policy and ToS) and I formed my opinion based on those. There may be two problems for you. Trademark. Since "MIDI" is trademarked, you can only use it according to its usage policy. While it is allowed to use even commercially (the website is ...


1

If you asked a couple of years ago, that would have been fine. Some US courts have explicitly decided that APIs are not copyrightable, and a lot of longstanding copyright precedent supports that. However, recently, in Oracle v. Google, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit decided that APIs are sometimes copyrightable. Now, that's only an issue if ...


1

I am not a Lawyer, and this is not Legal Advice. My opinion: No, using API is not derived work. The easy test to see if something is derived work is to ask yourself a question Could I have produced this exact binary of mine if I have never had any access to any part of the code (including headers) of potentially infringing sub-code, but just to ...


1

There really is no specific answer, there has not been enough (any?) case law to solidify these details. That is why you can't find consensus on the details. However, the general outline of what is intended for each license can be made. But, standard IANAL/TINLA disclaimer: I am not a Lawyer, and this is not Legal Advice. To get a legitimate legal ...


1

Is it possible to release software under GPL license but not publish one small part of it which contains data that really shouldn't be available publicly (I mean private API keys, etc.) AFAIU this is possible (but I am not a lawyer). I would suggest to add into the released GPL code either some "fake" key (or other fake data, clearly labeled as fake and ...


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