French GPL-compatible License

Samuel Liddicott sam at
Tue Jul 13 09:22:22 UTC 2004

Rui Miguel Seabra wrote:

>On Tue, 2004-07-13 at 09:29 +0100, Samuel Liddicott wrote:
>>I would welcome more clarification on what constitutes a distribution. 
>>If a small company modifies and builds and runs GPL software on a single 
>>computer they are not required to release the source as the derivative 
>>work is not being distributed.  Arguably a larger company (having more 
>>than one PC) may use the modified GPL software across the company 
>>without releasing source - even if they software is used to provide a 
>>public or commercial service - because the derivative work is not being 
>>Certainly if the GPL derivative code were made available to another 
>>company this would count as a distribution. What about to a different 
>>department? What about a different group company? What about to club 
>>members? What if the club is a company? What if the club is a company 
>>AND a club of companies?
>It may belong to a group, but they are distinct companies. Other than
>that, most of what you said are considered private circles in most about
What if the employee doing the code was empoyed by the group and not one 
of the group companies?
Does collaboration (say cvs) between developers at different companies 
of the same group count as distribution?
This is significant as cvs distributions are based on patches and 
diff's? If ed diff's are used it may be possible to collaborate without 
transmitting any of the original code; so this collaboration arbuably 
would not constitute a distribution; but its just a special form of the 
question: can I distribute a non-GPL patch script to a GPL product?

If company A buys company B (on paper) and then after merging some 
computer systems immediatly sells company B would this count as a 
Yeah, I am taking things to desperate limits, but desperate times may 
call for desperate measures; one day something like this may happen?

I would like to know what "distribution" means.


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