Fw: Query about GNU-GPL

Frank Heckenbach frank at g-n-u.de
Sat Mar 26 17:54:36 UTC 2005

Laurence Finston wrote:

> 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.

Of course, this discussion is not originally about your program, but
someone else's where not everything involved is GPL.

> 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.

You cannot violate your own license. "Breaking your own license"
would either weaken your license as you say, or render it entirely
invalid, so nobody else could actually use your code.

That's as long as you're the only copyright holder; i.e., if you
incorporate others' GPL code, you have a problem. And IIRC, the
original question was about the latter kind of situation, i.e.
trying to incorporate someone else's GPL'd (library) code.



Frank Heckenbach, frank at g-n-u.de
GnuPG and PGP keys: http://fjf.gnu.de/plan (7977168E)

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