Re: Dual-Licensing Linux Kernel with GPL V2 and GPL V3

From: Dmitry Torokhov
Date: Thu Jun 14 2007 - 13:01:32 EST

On 6/14/07, Al Viro <viro@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
On Thu, Jun 14, 2007 at 06:32:57PM +0200, Bernd Paysan wrote:

> BTW: If I grep through Linux, I find two files where you have noted your
> copyright and the release conditions (GPL v2), and I think last time I did
> the same thing, I found two GPLv2-files, as well - all other files with "Al
> Viro" in it apparently have multiple authors. These two files may be the
> same ones, or maybe there are two other files, making it four in total (or
> some further I missed, the text of v2 only is not as normed as the text
> for "v2 or later", but in general it's rare). These files clearly have to
> be rewritten or premission has to be asked when updating COPYING to GPLv3.
> But that's not a show-stopper.

Rot. "Multiple authors" doesn't get you out of that. If you take a code
available under GPLv2 or later and combine it with code under specific
version of GPL, result is under than specific version of GPL. If you want
to argue against that, make sure to Cc RMS on that, I would really like to
hear his opinion.

Multiple authors == need permission from each author with enough
contributions to that file to make the contributions in question

And in my case (and case of gregkh, and...) that would be considerably
more than a couple of files. Really.

I would expect that if you contribute to a file that explicitely says
"GPL v2 or later" and you do not change that wording then you agree
GPL v2 or later for that particular contribution. So for example
drivers/net/plip.c could be changed to GPL v3 even though you
contributed to it.

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