[ILUG] Linux Appliance & a GPL query
Niall O Broin
niall at linux.ie
Fri May 14 15:15:29 IST 2004
On Friday 14 May 2004, rcunniff at stp.dias.ie (Ronan Cunniffe) wrote:
>> Ah, if we contrast with 3b:
>> "for a charge no more than your cost of physically performing source
>> We can see that where 3b specifically limits the charge, hence the
>> lack of limitation in implies the fee is arbitrary. So anyone can
>> charge what they like for GPL software.
>I can see what you're getting at, but I'm appalled.
>If a company protects their extensions to a GPL work behind a $HUGE
>copying fee, they have de facto taken away source code access.
>Unless there is a ceiling on the physical copying cost, there is no
>difference between GPL and BSD licenses, because the extra freedoms
>provided by the GPL can in this way be extorted shut.
But there IS a ceiling on the physical copying cost - "for a charge no more
than your cost of physically performing source distribution". The small
problem there is that there's no set figure. But if push came to shove, and
somebody was seeking an absurd amount for this, then the only thing to do is
to go the legal road. The judge will rule on the reasonableness of what the
company is asking for source and will be guided by the terms of the license.
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