[Fsfe-se] Questions concerning GFDL
lists at minimum.se
Tue Aug 30 23:47:40 CEST 2005
Dear GNU License Gurus,
Lately I've been contributing a lot of images to the Wikimedia Commons
repository and I usually publish them under the recommended GFDL
license. Therefore I would like to laern more about exactly what the
GFDL license allows and does not allow. After some googling I have
arrived at three particular questions that I can not seem to answer myself.
QUESTION ONE: Suppose I download a GFDL-licensed image, from say the
Wikimedia Commons repository, and then insert this image into a text
document. Am I then forced to license the entire text document under the
GFDL license too?
I tried to figure out the answer to this question myself by actually
reading the GFDL text but with no luck so far (I have roughly zero legal
experience). I have read, in particular, section 7 labelled "AGGREGATION
WITH INDEPENDENT WORKS". The way I see it (and I hope I'm wrong) the
text document (.doc or similar) can not be considered to be "a
compilation of separate and independent documents" in which the GFDL
image would be one of these "separate and independent documents".
Therefore I assume that the text document must indeed be licensed under
QUESTION TWO: This question deals with the converse of question one, ie
inserting non GFDL-compatible images into a GFDL-licensed document. In
particular the Wikipedia project (which is all GFDL as you probably
know) frequently inserts non-GFDL-compatible images into their
GFDL-licensed articles. Is this really allowed under the GFDL?
QUESTION THREE: Is it illegal to print articles from Wikipedia, or do I
risk getting sued if I do?
The GFDL clearly says under section 2, "VERBATIM COPYING" that all
copies on any medium must include, amongst other things, a full copy of
the GFDL license text. Now, when I hit the PRINT-button in my browser
there is just no way it's gonna print a full copy of the GFDL and attach
it to the printed article. Therefore I've just breached the GFDL and I
could hypothethically be sued by copyright holders (ie the author(s) of
that particular article). Is this reasoning correct?
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