Alexandre Oliva aoliva@redhat.com
Mon Jul 16 18:43:00 GMT 2007

On Jul 16, 2007, kenner@vlsi1.ultra.nyu.edu (Richard Kenner) wrote:

> Let's revisit the example above.  I take a file which, for the purpose of
> this example will be GPLv2.  I modify that file to fix some bug.  That file
> remains GPLv2 because its a derived work of a GPLv2 file and nobody has
> changed its license condition (I COULD HAVE changed it to GPLv3, since
> everybody has that right by the GPL, but I chose not to).  After I get
> everything working, I make the patch.

And since the FSF released the file it is based on under GPLv2+, if
you release your patch, presumably a copyrightable derived work, it
must be released under GPLv2 or, at your option, any later version.

> But it WAS independently developed!  Let's suppose the purpose of
> the patch was to change all occurences of "function1" to
> "function2".  That patch has no protectable content, so the question
> of what license the PATCH ITSELF has is irrelevant.

If the patch is not a copyrightable work, discussing its copyright
license is like asking "how much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a
woodchuck would chuck wood?" :-)

Alexandre Oliva         http://www.lsd.ic.unicamp.br/~oliva/
FSF Latin America Board Member         http://www.fsfla.org/
Red Hat Compiler Engineer   aoliva@{redhat.com, gcc.gnu.org}
Free Software Evangelist  oliva@{lsd.ic.unicamp.br, gnu.org}

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