[drupal-devel] Drupal and GPL3

Karoly Negyesi karoly at negyesi.net
Fri Sep 30 14:35:26 UTC 2005

Some companies, such as Google, use code covered by GPL to offer their  
services through the Web. Do you plan to extend GPL 3 copyleft to request  
code publication in this case too, considering this behavior like a  
product distribution?

Running a program in a public server is not distribution; it is public  
use. We're looking at an approach where programs used in this way will  
have to include a command for the user to download the source for the  
version that is running.

But this will not apply to all GPL-covered programs, only to programs that  
already contain such a command. Thus, this change would have no effect on  
existing software, but developers could activate it in the future.

This is only a tentative plan, because we have not finished studying the  
matter to be sure it will work.

How would it work?

If you release a program that implements such a command, GPL 3 will  
require others to keep the command working in their modified versions of  
the program.

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