diary at Telent Netowrks

Try the GNU Project's Free Software#

Thu, 06 Jun 2002 00:01:43 +0000

Try the GNU Project's Free Software licensing quiz. For what it's worth, I got two wrong: question 6: offer-of-sources-for-binary-distribution (which I should have known) and the reverse-engineering question, about which I don't really care.

It suits people to claim that the GNU Licenses are overly restrictive and this will encourage users of proprietary software to carry on using that instead. So, I'd like to offer the "typical proprietary software EULA licensing quiz", with approximately the same questions

  1. Joan writes a web browser and releases the source code under a typical-proprietary-EULA on her web site. Fred gives a CD with binaries of Joan's browser to his friend for her birthday. What happens

    1. Joan sues Fred

  2. Now Fred makes modifications to Joan's web browser, and distributes binaries on his web site. What happens?

    • I.

      Joan sues Fred (again)

    1. I, and nothing else.
    2. I, and nothing else.
    3. I, but nothing else
    4. Any or all of I, I, I, or I

  3. Fred wishes to distribute Joan's browser linked to a third-party module. The third party module has the following license:

    This code may be freely modified, copied and distributed, so long as no fee is charged for it.

    Would this violate the typical proprietary EULA?

    1. Yes

  4. Peter creates a library called LibIdo licensed under a typical proprietary EULA. FooCorp distributes a modified version LibIdo library linked to their proprietary program Frobber. Which of the following is not an obligation of FooCorp?

    1. To lose in court
    2. To settle out of court

  5. Joan wants to distribute copies of her browser statically linked to Postfix (a mail server), which is released under the IBM Public License, a GPL-incompatible Free Software license. Other than Postfix, the browser includes only code on which Joan holds the copyright. Should she grant an exception to her typical proprietary EULA for this?

    1. No, what would be the point? People can't copy it anyway

  6. FooCorp distributes binaries of Joan's web browser on CD without source code. They include an offer to provide source code. Which of the following offers fulfills their obligations?

    • I. "You can download the source code from our web site at http://foocorp.example.com/download.html"
    • II. "Everyone who buys a binary CD may order up to one source CD per binary CD for $5000."
    • III. "Everyone may order a source CD for $5000."
    • IV. "Everyone who buys a binary CD may order up to one source CD per binary CD for the cost of distribution."

    • V. "Everyone may order a source CD for the cost of distribution."
    • VI.

      "Everyone who buys a binary CD may order up to one source CD for free."

    • VII. "Everyone may order a source CD for free."
    1. None of the above. Redistributing Joan's program is Piracy. Piracy is Theft. Theft is Love. Cleanliness is next to Godliness. Uh, wait ...

  7. Patty creates a library, and releases it under a typical proprietary EULA. Many people make improvements to this library, and submit them back to Patty, who incorporates them into newer versions of the library. Now Patty wants to make a proprietary version of this library. She makes two claims:

    • I.

      Because the original version was under a proprietary EULA, everyone who made improvements was acting in breach of the licence

    • II.

      Because she is the copyright holder, she can relicense the code, so nobody can distribute old versions anymore.

    Are these claims true?

    1. Both claims are true. II is a bit meaningless though, as nobody could have legally distributed the old versions anyway.

  8. FooCorp distributes Frobber linked against an unmodified version of LibIdo. Does the licence of LibIdo require FooCorp to allow users to reverse engineer Frobber for their own use?

    1. Yes.
    2. No, but it prevents FooCorp from doing this anyway

  9. Now FooCorp modifies Joan's browser to include a technology they have patented. They distribute this modified browser on CD. Are there any requirements in Joan's licence on how they may license their applicable patent?

    1. No, but it doesn't matter: they can't do this anyway

Hope this helps

grip update: having turned off autorepeat, I find now that clicking "play" after it's already played the disc once causes it to start on the last track