delaying source release... gpl conform?
mathfox at xs4all.nl
Fri Mar 3 21:41:18 CET 2006
Armijn Hemel wrote:
>>if a company distributing GPL-derived embedded products, where they stated
>>publicly that they use GPL software and will release the source in some
>>near future time, since they have "some copyright problems" with some of
>>their "other binaries".
>>They even provide an open forum to support their firmware, and keep on
>>promising on the forum that they will release the source asap (which is
>>already months ago now).
>>Is this "conform" to GPL?
> Well, the answer is clear: it's not.
What's your opinion based upon?
Let's cite the GPL:
3. You may copy and distribute the Program (or a work based on it, under
Section 2) in object code or executable form under the terms of Sections
1 and 2 above provided that you also do one of the following:
b) Accompany it with a written offer, valid for at least three years, to
give any third party, for a charge no more than your cost of physically
performing source distribution, a complete machine-readable copy of the
corresponding source code, to be distributed under the terms of Sections
1 and 2 above on a medium customarily used for software interchange; or,
If you provide a "written offer" with your distribution the GPL says
that you should ship the source code when asked for it; it doesn't
specify that you should do it overnight. I think that it would be very
reasonable to allow a company to collect requests and ship once a week.
Dragging the process more than a month, smells like GPL abuse to me.
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