[clug] sec: unclassified - Samba Team, on SCO and sweet irony

Kim Holburn kim.holburn at anu.edu.au
Thu Aug 21 18:26:15 EST 2003

At 6:12 PM +1000 2003/08/21, Matthew Hawkins wrote:
>Mark Harrison said:
>> yeh, I guess. That was resting on my assumption that the samba license
>> contains no terms. This is diffferent from there being no explicit
>> license, in which case i would certainly agree with you. If the GPL is
>> invalid, then samba is explicitly licensed under a license that
>> contains no terms, which to my mind, says you can do anything.
>Thankfully the law disagrees with you :)  Note, IANAL.  But I'm smart
>enough to be, and my Grandma says I would have made a good one ;)
>The trick is not to confuse Copyright and Licensing.  There is no law
>regarding licensing (afaik).  There is, however, a Copyright Act (which is
>a fun read).  The general idea of copyright is that the copyright holder
>is granted exclusive access to the copyrighted material.  This permits
>them a period of time in which they can try to scam as much money as
>possible out of their new innovative idea before its pretty much public
>knowledge and commercially unviable.  If people other than the copyright
>holder wish to make use of this material, then they must obtain the
>permission of the copyright holder.  The general way this is done is by
>the granting of a license, by the copyright holder, to the user.  If the
>copyright holder does not grant you a particular right in your license,
>you do not have that right.
>> Yes, copyright still applies, but I dont think your right to use the
>> code goes away automatically. Your right will go away when the
>> copyright owners explicitly take it away.
>No, your right to use, in fact, even possess, copyrighted material ceases
>the second your license is revoked.  The only act you can legally perform
>(afaik) on a copyrighted work in your possession, when you hold no rights
>from the copyright holder, is to remove it from your posession (destroy
>it, send it back to the copyright holder).

So if I buy a book from a bookshop and the "copyright holder" revokes my "license" to own the book, I have to send it back?

Has this ever happened?

>And this latest debate regarding the GPL is hilarious, its been tried &
>tested in courts around the world and held up. How much longer will
>Microsoft and their sponsored buttmonkeys continue to kick this old dead
>horse?  Ignoring the past legal history, I'm not even sure what the whole
>concept of an "invalid" license is.  IIRC here in Australia all terms of a
>license agreement between yourself and a copyright holder are a legally
>binding contract unless the terms contradict Australian law.  For example,
>we're allowed to make a duplicate of a copyrighted work for
>backup/archival purposes, regardless of what the license you get says, as
>the Copyright Act grants us this right, and that Act superceeds any
>license terms & conditions.  Why?  Because a license is simply a granting
>of rights for use of copyrighted material not already granted by the
>Copyright Act.
>If I go on any longer I'll probably continue to talk in circles, so bye!

Kim Holburn 
Network Consultant - Telecommunications Engineering
Research School of Information Sciences and Engineering
Australian National University - Ph: +61 2 61258620 M: +61 0417820641
Email: kim.holburn at anu.edu.au  - PGP Public Key on request

Life is complex - It has real and imaginary parts.
     Andrea Leistra (rec.arts.sf.written.Robert-jordan)

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