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Re: GPL question

From: John Hasler
Subject: Re: GPL question
Date: Tue, 23 Oct 2007 15:20:16 -0500
User-agent: Gnus/5.11 (Gnus v5.11) Emacs/22.1 (gnu/linux)

David Kastrup writes:
> If there is a library with compatible interface, you might be right.  If
> there isn't, and if the only reasonable way in which the user can
> sensibly make any use of your code is to link with a particular library,
> the the user is acting as your agent when assembling the product, and you
> can't excuse yourself from responsibility.

Under US law you cannot have contributory infringement without primary
infringement to contribute to.  You must show that the user does not have
the right to do that linking (and I don't see how he can be my agent: he
owns all the property involved free and clear and has no obligation do as I
tell him.)

> In a similar vein, you can't evade weapon laws by removing an essential,
> but standard part from guns and include instructions "please don't insert
> an M5x18mm screw into that and that place, or you might be liable of
> having assembled a fully functioning weapon".

If you distribute those kits only to people who have the requisite permits
you will not be liable as a accessory to violation of the weapons laws as
there will be no violation.
John Hasler
Dancing Horse Hill
Elmwood, WI USA

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