Subject: Re: Restriction on distribution by Novell?
From: "Ben Tilly" <btilly@gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 26 Sep 2006 16:07:29 -0700

On 9/26/06, Matthew Flaschen <superm40@comcast.net> wrote:
> Wilson, Andrew wrote:
>
> > What about GPLv2 /is/ clear (he asked rhetorically?)
>
> Amen, though I'd have to carry that to GPL3
>
>  > Suppose the original
> > distributor says "originals only, no copies accepted"
> > on the written offer?  I believe a distributor is allowed
> > to do this.
>
> I still think this is very dubious.  It's an offer to all third parties,
> not a coupon.  The physical paper shouldn't matter.  Rather, the offer
> is making a promise and that promise has to be kept for anyone with
> proof (a verbatim copy) of it.
[...]

It certainly violates the intent of the license.  But I think it might
not violate the text of the license.  If so, that would be a bug in
the license. :-)

However fancy lawyers might be able to make the clear intent binding
anyways.  Besides, it isn't really a big deal.  If the company pushes
this in a truly annoying way, eventually some customer will demand
source and republish it.  So what motivation would a company have to
generate negative publicity by being annoying this way?

Cheers,
Ben