Subject: Re: GPL & interfaces
From: Stephen Turnbull <>
Date: Mon, 18 Oct 1999 18:28:32 +0900 (JST)

>>>>> "shapj" == shapj  <> writes:

    shapj> Some comments on this discussion.

Some questions on the comments.

    shapj> First, the meaning of "derived work" is a technical term
    shapj> defined in the legal community with a fair degree of
    shapj> precision.  It means a work of authorship incorporating
    shapj> more than a certain specifically-defined minimum amount of
    shapj> content from some other work of authorship.

Hm.  I got the impression that "derived work" was actually defined
differently for the LGPL as compared to the GPL.  Is that true, or
does the LGPL have to explicitly exempt certain derived works?

How is the scope of the derived work defined, if not by the license
itself?  By this I mean is the "function call -> part of the work, run
a subprocess -> not part of the work" criterion generally accepted?  I
always got the impression that was decided by the FSF, but that's
because the only person I know of who reliably asks a lawyer when he
doesn't know is Richard Stallman.

    shapj> I expect that some poor soul will go to court and
    shapj> successfully argue that shrink wrap licenses cannot be
    shapj> binding, pointing to the large body of case law that says
    shapj> you cannot give up in a contract things that you don't know
    shapj> you are giving up.

Does this mean they can do whatever they please with the product, or
does it just mean that they still have a no-questions-asked money-back
guarantee once they've broken the seal to get access to the license?

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