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How not to handle a licensing violation

How not to handle a licensing violation

Posted Apr 11, 2007 20:48 UTC (Wed) by ajross (guest, #4563)
Parent article: How not to handle a licensing violation

One of the things I haven't seen discussed is how exactly this happened. It just seems incredibly sloppy. Apparently the OpenBSD developer intended to start with a working driver and reimplement it piecewise until he had replaced all the code. But is that kosher? That would strike me as almost the very definition of a "derived work", no?

Now, surely there are people who would disagree* with this analysis and say that it's fine. But shouldn't the developer have asked first? Something like "Is this OK to go into CVS as it is, or should I do development somewhere else?" Did any conversation like ever take place? Why not?

Even if this is an one-time process failure, the general lack of interest in enforement makes one wonder if, perhaps, this isn't the only such license violation in the tree.

* The original AT&T/BSD settlement involved a similar piecewise replacement of the Bell Labs code with "pure" Berkeley code, for example. So maybe this is just a tacit assumption in the BSD world.


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How not to handle a licensing violation

Posted Apr 11, 2007 22:29 UTC (Wed) by bronson (subscriber, #4806) [Link]

Looking for a quick win, I totally understand that. It's far easier to start with a working driver and then make incremental changes than it is to just bring up hardware cold.

But... How did the GPL code end up in CVS?? That's just amazing to me. OpenBSD is normally so tight with its code -- how did they let a mistake like this happen? And is there other tainted code in their CVS?


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