the right to make a difference

Sam Bull sam.hacking at
Mon Jun 6 15:02:38 UTC 2016

On Mon, 2016-06-06 at 12:58 +0200, Xen wrote:
> Because of that it will be judged according to cases such as:
> - game genie vs nintendo
> - artic vs midway
> - formgen vs micro star

So, firstly, the GPL is a copyright licence, so the conversation has
always been about copyright law. The only thing of relevance here is
copyright law. I'm not sure what other laws you might be trying to talk

The cases you mentioned are all about classifying whether a work is
considered a derivative or not (as part of copyright law). As I
originally said, I was under the impression that the author of the
patches accepted that their work was a derivative, and was selling them
under the GPL.
	As I also said, if that is the case, then the author already
considers it to be a derivative, and the GPL applies. If that is not
the case, and it was found that the work was not a derivative, then the
GPL cannot be applied.
	As also mentioned previously, the patches (apparently) involve
changing a lot of the code base (rather than being a simple module
addon), and therefore would likely be considered a derivative.

All the other factors you keep mentioning ONLY apply for deciding
whether something is deemed to be a derivative work or not (under
copyright law) in more complex cases. It has NOTHING to do with
anything else, once something is considered to be a derivative by the
court, everything I have been telling you applies.
	For example, in the Micro Star v. Formgen Inc., which was about
addon levels, the levels could be distributed as a separate module and
not using any of the original code, therefore it likely wouldn't be
considered a derivative of the code. However, because it is a game, the
court ruled that it was a derivative of the story.

As the patches substantially change the original code base, it is very
likely to be considered a derivative, without needing to take into
account all these other more complex factors.
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