Fw: Query about GNU-GPL

Laurence Finston lfinsto1 at gwdg.de
Sat Mar 26 16:56:09 UTC 2005

Frank Heckenbach wrote:

> I suppose not, but how about running `bison parser.y' and using or
distributing the resulting output?

Since both packages have free licenses I am allowed to do this.  If the 
license of a library I was including allowed a similar use, I would not be
violating it.  If my package was under the GNU GPL, I was the copyright 
holder, and my actions violated the GPL, I think I would be acting
foolishly, since this would weaken my position if I wanted to prosecute
somebody else for a copyright violation.  However, I don't believe that I
would be breaking any law, because I would be the damaged party.  I don't
believe that any law enforcement agency pursues copyright violations unless
the copyright holder initiates an action, and a person cannot bring charges
against himself or herself.
If the FSF is the copyright holder, than the package would presumably be a GNU
package, and the maintainer is responsible for the distribution.  In this
case, I expect that the maintainer and the FSF would be able to sort out any
problems themselves.

> So it really was the intention (for the GLR skeleton), and they've now
> discussed changing it. (And as Alfred noted, originally it even was the
> intention for all skeletons.)

I stand corrected.  I thought there was also something about bringing the
situation with Bison in line with that of other tools, but perhaps not.

I have tried to answer to the best of my ability and I hope that the
people who actually had questions were satisfied with the information they
got, whether it came from me or someone else.
I have now said my last word in this thread.


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