Re: GPL vs non-GPL device drivers

From: Trent Waddington
Date: Sat Feb 17 2007 - 20:27:26 EST

On 2/17/07, David Schwartz <davids@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
I don't think that's grey at all. I think it's perfectly clear that linking
cannot create a derivative work. No automated process can -- it takes
creativity to create a derivative work. (That doesn't mean that just because
you can link A to B, a cannot be a derivative work of B or vice verse, of
course. It just means that if A is not a derivative work of B, linking A to
B cannot make it so, nor can the result be a derivative work.)

Sigh. VJ is distributing the linux kernel with proprietary
extensions. If you want to argue that the proprietary extensions in
isolation are not derivative works of the kernel, fine, you might have
a case, but the combined work, which VJ is distributing is *clearly* a
derivative work and must be distributed under the terms of the GPL.

Despite which, legal bullshit is best left for lawyers.. the *intent*
of the GPL is that if you distribute *any* changes, extensions or
plugins for a GPL work, you do so under the GPL. The law may not
allow for this to be enforced, but it shouldn't need to.. one should
read the GPL as 100% enforceable and follow it without looking for
"loop holes" as it is the stated desire of how the author of the code
wants you to use his work. Looking for loop holes, and worse yet,
discussing those loop holes in a public place, is just insulting.

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