[development] GPL 2 violation by integrationservic.es

larry at garfieldtech.com larry at garfieldtech.com
Thu Nov 19 17:06:02 UTC 2009


There is nothing in the GPL that says you cannot sell a module.  The 
module author is free to charge $1 million dollars a copy if he wants 
to... provided that the code is then licensed to buyers under the GPL, 
which means the buyer could redistribute it for free if they felt like 
it.  So just charging for a module does not constitute a GPL violation. 
  We've been over this, and the dev list is not the place to be 
rehashing it.

I've already replied to that effect to the mentioned thread.

--Larry Garfield
Director of Legal Affairs
Drupal Association

Brian Vuyk wrote:
> There are several long-running discussions on g.d.o over whether or not 
> a module constitutes a derivative of Drupal. Unfortunately, there isn't 
> much in the way of legal precedent to give definition to the term 
> 'derivative' in the context of the GPL.
> While it is the Drupal Association's interpretation that a module *is* 
> derivative code, this is a somewhat legal grey area.
> If a module is considered to not be a derivative, then it doesn't 
> automatically gain the GPL, and there is nothing wrong with selling it, 
> and prosecuting anyone who redistributes it.
> If it is indeed a derivative (the stance I take), then modules 
> automatically assume the full protection / freedom of the GPL. In which 
> case this developer is violating the GPL.
> In short, someone should purchase the module, and exercise their GPL 
> freedom to post it to D.org, or take over maintainership of the module.
> Brian
> Naheem Zaffar wrote:
>> 2009/11/19 Alex Barth <alex at developmentseed.org 
>> <mailto:alex at developmentseed.org>>
>>     This may have come up before, but
>>     http://integrationservic.es/drupal.php launched on Nov 12 and
>>     appears to be violating drupal's GPL2 by charging 33 $ for a
>>     module download.
>> The GPL does not say that the module has to be for free. However once 
>> the module has been "distributed" to other individuals, no additional 
>> restrictions above the GPL can be added, so if the person has  clause 
>> that the purchasers cannot sell/pass the module onto others, that 
>> would be a problem, otherwise, no it wouldn't.
>> IANAL, but that is my understanding.

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