Bundling and the GPL
Posted Jun 20, 2006 22:02 UTC (Tue) by khim
In reply to: Bundling and the GPL
Parent article: Harald Welte on the flood of GPL violations
The more interesting question, today, is "what is a derivative work." If using interfaces made something a derivative work, then its distribution could be controlled whether separated or integrated.
It's interesting question, yes, but not as much you'd like to think. If you are using published interfaces and don't include verbatim code (usually it's not the case with binary kernel modules because they are including a lot of inline code straight from kernel headers - but there are enouhg projects to make it possible; all unsuccessfull so far). But in reality this question is kind of moot: it does not matter if you are using interfaces or not. If you are bundling two things in one box - they become parts of "collective work".
I think you want to clear totally different distinction: what is "collective work" and what is "mere aggregation". And this is tough question because copyright law does not know about "mere aggregation". Derivative work ? Ok. Can distinguish. Collective work ? Even easier. Mere aggregation... Hmm... what is it ?
And since this "mere aggregation" clause allowance is the only thing makers of all kind of embedded devices are using (no, it's not practical to make your phone to download binary module from ftp)... - this is good question to clarify. Unfortunatelly any definitive answer will anger a lot of people - but at least we'll have clarity.
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