Subject: Re: Two GPL Questions
From: Rick Moen <>
Date: Mon, 10 Dec 2001 08:36:53 -0800

begin Chris D. Sloan quotation:
> You have no right to create derivative works unless that right is
> granted by the copyright holder.

I'm sorry, but weren't we talking about code under one version or
another of the GPL?  If this discussion is going to trot out all of 
copyright law every five minute, it's going to be rather long.

GPL version 2 explicitly conveys the right to create derivative works,
in clause 2.

> They can grant you that right only subject to certain conditions, so
> my question is, given that the GPL restricts your rights to place
> restrictions on future licensees....

This is vague, and I've been trying to be carefully specific:  The GPL
does _not_ (and cannot) place restrictions on your code that you write
as modifications to the covered original code.  What it does is specify
under what conditions you may distribute the sum of your work and the 
original work.

> ...can you effectively remove their right to use foo together with
> your changes with any version of the GPL other than v.2?

I cannot imagine how this could possibly be so.

Let us suppose that you create package foo, and issue copies under 
GPL version 2.  I later write module bar for package foo, and issue 
my code under GPL version 2 or later.  

Still later, I write replacement code for the remainder of your foo
package, and issue a copy of it along with module bar, stating that 
the entirety may be used under GPL v. 2 or later.  

Do you now have any legitimate legal complaint?  I really don't think
so.  (IANAL.)  

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