[FFmpeg-devel] [PATCH] LICENSE: remove incorrect statements that leaked in from libav

Reimar Döffinger Reimar.Doeffinger at gmx.de
Tue Aug 14 09:25:21 CEST 2012

On 14 Aug 2012, at 09:04, Reimar Döffinger <Reimar.Doeffinger at gmx.de> wrote:

> On 14 Aug 2012, at 00:38, Michael Niedermayer <michaelni at gmx.at> wrote:
>> On Mon, Aug 13, 2012 at 08:34:17PM +0200, Reimar Döffinger wrote:
>>> On Mon, Aug 13, 2012 at 08:15:09PM +0200, Reimar Döffinger wrote:
>>>> On Mon, Aug 13, 2012 at 07:07:04PM +0200, Michael Niedermayer wrote:
>>>>> This is based on the ubuntu technical committee understanding of
>>>>> the libfaac license:
>>>>> https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/technical-board/2011-February/000703.html
>>>>> That is
>>>>> 1. libfaac is not LGPL itself as a whole
>>>>> 2. libfaac is not GPL compatible (additional restrictions violate GPL)
>>>>> 3. libfaac is distributable (ubuntu distributes it)
>>>>> 4. libfaac contains LGPL code itself (stated in libfaac README and other places)
>>>>> from above axioms one can conclude libfaac must be linkable with LGPL code
>>>>> because where it not, it itself could not be distributed
>>>> 4) could be based on assuming that libfaac authors would automatically
>>>> give you rights beyond what the LGPL does, thus allowing it to be
>>>> combined with non-LGPL compatible code.
>>>> As to the incompatibility there is in section 6 of LGPL v2.1:
>>>>> provided that the terms permit
>>>>> modification of the work for the customer's own use and reverse
>>>>> engineering for debugging such modifications.
>>>> The libfaac license under discussion does _not_ permit you to make
>>>> modifications, since any modification that would make the code not
>>>> standards-compatible would mean that you loose your license to it.
>>>> That is ignoring the fact that if you are pedantic since no software,
>>>> and certainly also libfaac, is bug free the code probably never was
>>>> standards compliant and thus nobody ever had a license to distribute
>>>> it ever, even stand-alone.
>>> I know that the disclaimer rather belongs on top, but I should say
>>> that's of course my (pedantic) reading of it, and lawyers and courts
>>> may have different opinions.
>>> If you mind the description, personally I would go for "we think it is
>>> possible it might be unredistributable, but we don't know. It is up to
>>> you to either not redistribute the result, consult a lawyer or just take
>>> the risk (Ubuntu seems to have chosen the last one <link>)"
>> can you elaborate on the problem you see in my suggested change of the
>> text ? (iam asking so i can suggest a better text)
> Nothing really in particular except that it is very vague and IMHO seems to be even less help for deciding what to do than mine.

And I should have said: feel free to go ahead with your version, I just really disagreed with your way of arguing that there is no problem.

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