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

From: Jesper Juhl
Date: Fri Jun 15 2007 - 10:58:40 EST

On 15/06/07, Dmitry Torokhov <dmitry.torokhov@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
On 6/15/07, Alan Cox <alan@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> > But COPYING *is* the entire text and starts with: "
> > Version 2, June 1991"
> >
> > so there is no confusion about the version.
> The version of the COPYING file (and the licence document), not of the
> licence on the code.

Using this logic one can say that Linux kernel is BSD or even public
domain and COPYING is there just for kicks.

No. Only the original author can specify the license. If no license at
all is specified only the author has any rights to the work, other
people don't have any right to distribute, modify or whatever.
So if the COPYING file doesn't specify the license for work without a
license clause directly in the file, then only the author has any
rights, you can't just then move in and assign an arbitrary license.
But I think you would find it very hard to argue that files
contributed to the Linux kernel without an explicit license notice
does not fall under the terms set forth in the COPYING document.

Jesper Juhl <jesper.juhl@xxxxxxxxx>
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