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16

GPLv2 is clear about this: I have to release the whole program as GPLv2 if I want to distribute it. That would be the FSF's position, at least. It is clear that if I don't, I am subject to lawsuits because I violated the GPL license. You are always subject to lawsuits. In this particular case, however, there is a reasonably high risk that a court would ...


11

Law is complicated and varies by jurisdiction. In the United States (and probably many other jurisdictions), a court generally cannot compel you to release your source code simply because you did not abide by the terms of a copyleft copyright license. In this situation, you have committed copyright infringement (based on the facts you've presented), but the ...


8

Yes, unethical use of open source assets is an ethical problem. However: Licenses that say “don't do illegal stuff” won't stop criminals from doing illegal stuff. Unwanted behaviour is really hard to define, to the point that the definitions might be too vague to be enforceable. Excluding specific groups is a very blunt instrument. E.g. allowing everyone ...


8

To quote from the MIT License: THE SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED "AS IS", WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO THE WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND NONINFRINGEMENT. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE AUTHORS OR COPYRIGHT HOLDERS BE LIABLE FOR ANY CLAIM, DAMAGES OR OTHER LIABILITY, WHETHER IN ...


6

With respect to my colleague apsillers (and noting IANAL/IANYL) I disagree somewhat. The law is indeed complex, and does indeed vary by jurisdiction. Just how much became clear to me in a talk at FOSDEM 2018 by three experienced lawyers, which I wrote up for LWN (the article also links to the original video). The parts specifically relevant to your ...


5

However... what rights does the receiver of my code have? All files have a header that states that it's not GPL and forbids redistribution. I think there's two possibilities: The receiver can sue me to release the code under GPL, or report me to the GNU foundation so they can sue me and ask for damages. But the code remains proprietary (even though what I ...


5

There are a couple of moving parts here: What is the justification for not opening their source code? This is more of a question to the customers (in this case - the government) than the manufacturers. I don't know any specific details about any voting system, but generally speaking, if the government purchases anything (in this case - a voting system) ...


5

So you know that Free and Open Source Software can not limit use, and that trying to do so would be useless and problematic. So I will discuss the other part. Your liability: First this is a legal thing. Consult lawyers in your jurisdiction. All I will say is it may depend on what you supply. For example you mention a gun. In the UK it is illegal to supply ...


4

The (A)GPL requires that the entire program can be distributed under the terms of the (A)GPL. Thus, it doesn't matter whether the proprietary parts and the (A)GPL parts touch each other directly. Introducing a component C that tries to isolate them changes nothing. There are two workarounds: If the components A and B are clearly separate programs, the (A)...


4

You are likely liable if applications that you run and operate, that store user-supplied data, have that data exfiltrated. The exact nature of the liability depends on the applicable jurisdiction(s): in Europe (and now that the GDPR is in effect also if you cater for European visitors) things can get quite hairy, while the US is generally less-sensitive to ...


3

Trademarks exist to avoid confusion in the public about who or what a particular name refers to. Trademark right are not given automatically, but trademarks have to be explicitly claimed and actively defended. A quick search shows no trademark registration on the name "Twine" in the context of Python packaging, nor any statement in the project's ...


3

Very murky... If the application's relevant parts run on the user's machine, you aren't distributing anything. If it runs on your server, you arent't distributing anything. In neither case would GPL kick in, as I understand it. But by FSF's interpretation (not court validated, as far as I know), writing software that can only be used with something GPLed ...


3

All free / open source software can be sold. If you're distributing GPL software then you have to make the source code available to those who receive it. If your code is merely running in a VBox instance then you won't be bound by VBox' license, though if you use other free software libraries make sure you follow their licenses too. With VirtualBox the one ...


3

Plausible, an open source alternative to Google analytics, released a blog post detailing their move from MIT licensing to the AGPL (Affero GNU Public License). In it, they have the following claim: Here are a couple of events that made us aware of the risks with a permissive open source license: There’s been at least one case where a corporation has taken ...


2

An FFmpeg binary that has been built with both --enable-gpl and --enable-nonfree cannot be distributed. Not at all. The GPL has the requirement that all code must be available under a GPL-compatible license, but --enable-nonfree adds some codecs with a GPL-incompatible license. The result is something you can not distribute without violating the copyright ...


2

The requirements for the MIT wrapper are simply "don't remove the copyright and license texts". The requirements for the LGPL library are If/when you make changes to the library, effectively distribute them under the LGPL. If/when you use the library in an application, give the recipients of the binary the means to replace the library with a version of ...


2

I'm going to answer your question from the perspective: what is the risk to open sourcing the technology that your friend's business has developed. I try to tackle your more specific question at the end. TL,DR If your friend's company is built around the technology the company would open source, it's a real risk that their company would not be financially ...


2

Yes, the license applies to the header as well. The easiest way to satisfy the license terms is to copy the project's MIT license directly into a comment block in your modified header file. You only have to include the license notice, but are not required to publish your modifications or your dotfiles under the MIT license.


2

We have a question here called So the GPL doesn't restrict the creator of the software in any way? which addresses the first part of this issue. Essentially, as long as you are the sole rightsholder in this library (ie, it's not GPL because it's based on somebody else's GPL code) then it is fine for you to convey the library to the client on terms other ...


2

Depending on jurisdiction, there could be copyright exceptions available that allow reverse-engineering for the purpose of interoperability. Sniffing is particularly unproblematic because you're observing behaviour instead of reading copyright-protected material, but decompilation could be an issue because it's not clear that your software is your own ...


2

It is legal if you use the font preinstalled in iOS. In this case, Monotype is wrong. Direct Monotype to this page.


2

It's been a number of years since I looked at GPL licensing, but the last time I did, we all sat down with our attorney and asked about it. What we came up with (in his opinion, which has NOT been tried in a competent court) is that all of the unassociated proprietary code was protectable and ours. We could not claim any form of protection on the GPL ...


1

However... what rights does the receiver of my code have? All files have a header that states that it's not GPL and forbids redistribution. The receiver has the rights to each protected element in the code that you distribute that the author (or rights holders) of that element chose to offer it under. You cannot license any element you do not hold the ...


1

Just an fyi: Most operating systems that run the Internet (Linux) and most Web servers (Apache) and programming languages (i.e: Python, Javascript, others) are open source and many open source projects are free to use. Importantly, the operations are well understood with training and personnel available to operate them. Therefore, not having in an ...


1

When I distribute software to a customer, is it mandatory to publish proprietary source code as well under the CDDLv1.0 license? The only code that must have sources published under the CDDL 1.0 license is the original library that came under that license and any modifications (edits, additions, deletions) you made to that library. Code that simply uses/...


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