Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 21st Apr 2012 19:25 UTC
GNU, GPL, Open Source "A new analysis of licensing data shows that not only is use of the GPL and other copyleft licenses continuing to decline, but the rate of disuse is actually accelerating." This shouldn't be surprising. The GPL is complex, and I honestly don't blame both individuals and companies opting for simpler, more straightforward licenses like BSD or MIT-like licenses.
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RE[3]: Pragmatic vs theoretical
by lemur2 on Mon 23rd Apr 2012 04:00 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Pragmatic vs theoretical"
lemur2
Member since:
2007-02-17

"The GPL is not "viral", it applies ONLY to a package of code released by the author of that code under the GPL.


That's MPL. Anything you link with GPL'd software becomes contaminated and is also GPLd.
"

Not true. If you write your own code, it is your code. If you make a product using someone else's code, it is still their code, and you need to get their permission.

If you write some code, and you link with GPL'd software, then you have created what is known as a derived work under copyright law. You don't then wholly own the resulting work, it becomes jointly owned by you and by whomever holds the copyright to the works which you linked in. This is an act YOU did, in no way were you forced to do that.

OK, so if you did that, you now have the following options:

(1) Release the whole of the derived work, both your code and the GPL'd code which you linked in, under the GPL. That is fine according to the permissions of the GPL.

(2) Get a separate commercial license to use the code which you linked in from the copyright holders. They may, or may not charge you for that commercial license at their discretion. Once you have such a sepearte commercial license for the "parts" which you used to make your product, you are now all set to be able to sell your product commercially.

Either way, you are not "forced" to do one thing or the other. If you decide to release the derived work (including some of your code) under the GPL, then that is your decision. If you decide to make your product commercial, and you get a commercial license from the authors of the work you linked in, then the resulting derived work is commercial, not GPL.

The GPL is therefore not viral.

Edited 2012-04-23 04:01 UTC

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