Re: Purpose of licensing info

Peter Williams <peter.williams@...>

The license of a license file is not necessarily the license defined
in that file. For example, if the file COPYING contains the text of
the GPL-v2 its license should be

Everyone is permitted to copy and distribute verbatim copies of
this license document, but changing it is not allowed.

because that is license under which the fsf allows copying the text of
the gpl.[1]

We could add a new property for license files to indicate the
license(s) they define/provide, separate from the license under which
they may be copied. Doing so would allow a transitivity approach.


On Fri, Jan 14, 2011 at 11:30 PM, dmg <dmg@...> wrote:
From the point of view of maintenance of SPDX files, it would be
useful to say, in this case:

On Sat, Jan 15, 2011 at 1:11 AM, Peterson, Scott K (HP Legal)
<scott.k.peterson@...> wrote:

In the file:

“See COPYING” [where the COPYING file is a copy of the GPL]
License: Same as [COPYING]


License: GPL-v2+

The license of the referring file might change without the file
actually being modified.

Basically, allow transitivity in the specification of the license.
Another alternative is to
include inthe referring file the actual license (GPLv2+) and a
standardized note saying:
this license comes from that file COPYING. That way if COPYING changes license
(the actual license changed, or it was incorrectly assessed in the
first place...etc)
this file should change license too.



asserted license: GPL-2.0

license information in file: “See COPYING”

Is my understanding of the intent for recording information about what was
actually in the file correct?

-- Scott


Daniel M. German
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