Licensing Issues

Pascal J. Bourguignon pjb at
Wed Jul 1 06:53:05 UTC 2015

Alan Ruttenberg <alanruttenberg at>

> Also, I don't think we have a difference of opinion regarding the
> complexities of determining whether something is a derived work.
> However, in the case of the GNU Classpath extension, it is the
> understanding, explicitly noted, that a derived work is created (a
> combined work) by the linking of the library. The license then makes
> an exception for this specific kind of derived work (as copyright
> owners they can license it as they please). Of course if there is no
> derived work then there isn't anything to argue about.
>  Perhaps the question comes up as to whether a project that is
> following the terms of the Classpath license is a derived work. It is
> an interesting academic question as to whether it is a derived work
> or not. However the question is moot since the license excludes such
> considerations as making a difference, as long as the library license
> terms are followed. 

Well, AIUI, the licence terms are only a "moral" contract between the
copyright owner and the user of the software.

As a user, you may be comforted to know that this clause means the
copyright owner won't consider that you made a derived work by just
linking with his code.  What I'm saying is that this doesn't mean that a
judge will find similarly, would he be involved between copyright owner
and user for any reason about the resulting software.

__Pascal Bourguignon__       
“The factory of the future will have only two employees, a man and a
dog. The man will be there to feed the dog. The dog will be there to
keep the man from touching the equipment.” -- Carl Bass CEO Autodesk

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