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SubjectRe: Linux in a binary world... a doomsday scenario
On Mon, Dec 05, 2005 at 08:12:16PM -0800, Greg KH wrote:
> On Mon, Dec 05, 2005 at 03:56:06PM -0800, Tim Bird wrote:
> > DISCLAIMER: I'm not speaking for Sony here. Personally
> > I don't believe that most drivers are derivative works
> > of the operating systems they run with, and I don't
> > believe it helps Linux to assert that they are.
> > But, hey, it's not my kernel, and not my plan for
> > world domination. ;-)
> Why do people bring up the "derivative works" issue all the time. Are
> they so blind to the very simple "linking" issue that all kernel modules
> do when they are loaded into the kernel?

The linked kernel+module combination is pretty clearly a derived work
(but I am not a lawyer). However, that never gets *distributed* and
the GPL only covers distribution rights.

The question of whether or not something which *could* be linked into
the kernel is a derived work is a very different question, and if
taken too far, an advocate of this interpretation starts advocating
something very close to interface copyrights --- something which I
will note the FSF is passionately against when they called a boycott
on companies such as Lotus many years ago.

But this is very much off-topic for this list. I suggest that folks
talk to Larry Rosen for his view on this issue, if they want a
balanced counterpoint to that pushed by the FSF.

- Ted
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