HTC Inspire 4g Kernel Source
joseph at heenan.me.uk
Thu Aug 18 09:31:03 CEST 2011
On 17/08/2011 20:55, James Zdziebkowski wrote:
> I have attempted to contact HTC again stating I want them to give me a
> copy of the kernel source and here is what I got:
> This again, does not include any terms or conditions that require us
> to immediately release the source code. It clearly indicates the that
> the offer must be valid for up to three years and that we must "give"
> a copy to "any third party." It does not say that the source code must
> be given immediately upon request from said third party.
As Neil says, I think there is an implicit "within a reasonable time"
here. Clearly it would not be okay to make someone wait 3 years for the
source, equally I would imagine it is okay for the kind of delays often
associated with getting a response from a business to apply (perhaps 3-5
> Section 3 of the Terms and Condtions also states that "If distribution
> of executable or object code is made by offering access to copy from a
> designated place, then offering equivalent access to copy the source
> code from the same place counts as distribution of the source code,
> even though third parties are not compelled to copy the source along
> with the object code. "
I don't understand why they included this. They're not currently
offering the source from the same place as the binaries, so aren't
currently compliant with it.
This paragraph almost seems to go against their argument, suggesting
that source code should be available at the same time as (or earlier
than) binaries if you choose this method. It's not a very strong
> This is again the method that we are chosing to supply the source code
> in. This part of the license clearly states that this distribution can
> be "made." HTC is currently in the process of making said
> distribution; that is to say writing and formating the source code
> (kernal) in such a way as to make it readily and easily (as is a
> requirement of the license) accessible from our developer website.
> We are not choosing to not supply you with the source code. We are
> simply unable to provide it to you at this time as it is not currently
> in an easily accessible format.
These paragraphs disturb me a lot.
They are required to release the same source they used to build the
binary. It does not take 90-120 days to zip up this source code. They
should not be 'writing and formating' the source code between the build
I'm not sure where "easily accessible format" came from. I don't believe
that phrase is in the GPL. (I presume they're referring to the "medium
customarily used for software interchange" clause, but I don't see the
> If you beleive that the GPL entitles you to receive the source code
> immediately upon request, as opposed to the first available oportunity
> at the best of our abilities, please provide a quotation of the actual
> license that states that the source code must be provided immediately
> upon request and not just "given."
"as opposed to the first available oportunity at the best of our
abilities": again, it does not in any way take someone 90-120 days to
prepare the source release, they are clearly not using the best of their
abilities nor doing so at the first available opportunity.
As to the next step, I'm not sure.
I would presume HTC have made a more blatant violation of the license in
the past (eg. failure to include a copy of the GPL license and/or
written offer), so the most sound legal approach would (in my opinion)
be for one of the copyright holders to start an action pointing out that
HTC have lost their rights under the GPL by violating the license - and
agree to settle on the condition that future binary and source releases
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