Question regarding GPL

Volker Dormeyer volker at
Thu Feb 26 14:34:41 UTC 2004

On Thu, Feb 26, 2004 at 12:59:08PM +0000,
Alex Hudson <home at> wrote:
 > On Thu, 2004-02-26 at 12:39, Volker Dormeyer wrote:
 > > if this is the case, the "public domain" category description on
 > > 
 > >
 > > 
 > > might be wrong, because it suggests that code without a copyright is public
 > > domain. 
 > No, that description is correct, PD software isn't copyrighted. What I
 > was saying was that software without a copyright notice may not be
 > public domain: you don't *have* to put a notice on things you author, so
 > if you wrote a piece of software tomorrow and didn't put a copyright
 > notice on it, you would still have copyright on it and it wouldn't be
 > public domain.
 > > I'm interest in how someone can be certain, wether code without a copyright
 > > header is public domain or not? Does anybody know this?
 > You can't be certain, that's why it's recommended to put a notice on the
 > software.

 > I'm fairly sure that in the UK you can't just mark a piece of software
 > as "public domain", although taking that action would probably mean that
 > you would find it extremely difficult to enforce your copyright at a
 > later point. In the UK, moral rights are not attached to software
 > either, whereas on the continent they are - and I'm told you cannot
 > rescind those rights either, so again you wouldn't be able to say a
 > piece of software is public domain.

Hmm, up to now I was pretty sure, that someone can transfer the copyright
to someone else or completely renounce on it. And if the copyright is
renounced, it then should be public domain in my opinion.

I agree, that this is not possible on the european continent, it's called
"Urheberrecht" here in Germany.


 Volker Dormeyer	<volker at>

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