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Re: [ROFL] GCC's GPLv3 "Updated License Exception"

From: Hyman Rosen
Subject: Re: [ROFL] GCC's GPLv3 "Updated License Exception"
Date: Fri, 30 Jan 2009 09:24:58 -0500
User-agent: Thunderbird (Windows/20081105)

7 wrote:
The output of a CD player is music and a derivative of the CD's binary
data held within and the music is protected by copyright.

The output of GCC are code structures that have been hand coded
by someone with copyright over the way its been put together.
When gcc produces its output, that output is legally protected
by copyright because it embodies their hand crafted work.

Please see <>, for example:
    A “derivative work,” that is, a work that is based on
    (or derived from) one or more already existing works,
    is copyrightable if it includes what the copyright law
    calls an “original work of authorship.”

The consistent (and apparently deliberate) error made by the FSF is
to disregard the "original work of authorship" requirement. The
circular also goes on to say:
    Compilations and abridgments may also be copyrightable if
    they contain new work of authorship. When the collecting of
    the preexisting material that makes up the compilation is a
    purely mechanical task with no element of editorial selection,
    or when only a few minor deletions constitute an abridgment,
    copyright protection for the compilation or abridgment as a
    new version is not available.

Thus: the inclusion of runtime library code in the output of a
program does not create a derivative work because there has been
no original work of authorship involved in the creation of the
output. When the output contains pieces of runtime library code
it might be considered a compilation, but since the output has
literally been generated by a purely mechanical task, it is not
eligible for copyright protection as a compilation.

It may still be possible to craft a license restriction on the
runtime library code that will make things behave in the way the
FSF would like, though.

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