* On 8/7/19 9:31 AM, Zenaan Harkness wrote:
In the interests of having Veracrypt be distributable by Debian,
all Veracrypt code must be licensed accordingly.
This can be done by public notice (see below).
Re-licensing can be a difficult, lengthy process and - as far as
I've seen in the one case I observed and took part in (mpv's core re-licensing, which started in 2015 and is more or less done at the
current time, but still not completely finished) - doesn't work the
way you'd like to have it.
Doing so would be somewhat similar to how the MAME community caused
their source code license to be changed from "problematic for Debian/
the FSF etc" into something distributable by Debian etc (I think they
went to GPL).
Skimming over articles, this situation looks different. The MAME
project didn't just inherit/fork code from another developer team,
but was always headed by the MAME development team itself, with
changing personnel. Crucially, the project lead that initiated the
license change has already been head for 3 years at the time, so I
figure he'd be part of the project to some degree/contributing to
it for an even longer time already.
If anything, this example shows that re-licensing can be pretty
easy IFF you control most code and contributors can be easily
reached (they obviously have contacted contributors individually as
well, not just issued this "public notice"), but even that process
is dodgy as best, as it wasn't carried out in the public, as far as
I can tell. There was no way to observe it.
Here's what the Veracrypt community would need to do:
- make a public announcement that they will, after DURATION say 1
year, change the license to all outstanding source code inherited
from TrueCrypt, to be Apache/GPL/whatever
... and effectively ignore the original authors's copyright and original license.
- include in the announcement that any party objecting must contact
the developers at BLAH (email list address, or list of developer
That's not the way this stuff works. You have to assume objection
UNTIL given permission. I wonder if that would be a fitting
metaphor: a burglar justifying his actions by giving the sleeping
original occupants an ample amount of time, say, 10 minutes, to
answer the question if they'd be okay with him taking valuables.
Since they haven't responded, he assumed that it's fine to proceed.
More tongue-in-cheek, naturally, but still somewhat fitting.
The announcement needs to be published and made generally publicly available - e.g. at Slashdot, LWN, on the Veracrypt home page, etc.
Ugh, I didn't yet know I have to check these outlets regularly. Now
I'm terrified of having missed a lot of legal announcements for any
project I ever contributed to!
Legally, this does a few things:
- gives general public Notice (legal concept), that something will
be done in the future, thus satisfying the general duty of care to
the public that something will be done which may affect the
interests of the public
I don't think this concept can be applied in this case. It might be
a fine in order to inform a mostly anonymous, but concerned mass,
but the situation is different here.
For instance, informing affected parties about upcoming communal
changes via public announcements/notices in the town hall
(including about their legal right to oppose the changes) is fine
if the affected parties can not be easily identified.
Even if the administration had an up-to-date list of residents,
other affected parties might exist that are not registered at that
place, but, e.g. commuting.
On the other hand, this is not an acceptable procedure in legal
proceedings that involve a set of known parties.
In this case, they must be notified explicitly.
This case is more alike the latter one.
- parties who remain silent, are thereafter (after time period
DURATION) "taken to have tacitly consented"
During the mpv re-licensing, code written/modified by unreachable contributors was marked as not re-licensable and to be rewritten,
which sounds like a much saner approach.
The above is legally sufficient to make such a change, and the MAME community is at least one example where this legal technique of
Public Notice has been used effectively.
Again, I consider MAME's license change shady at best.
A contributor with considerable changes objecting to the change
(even retrospectively, for instance because the whole "public
notice" thing didn't reach him) might easily pull the project into interesting legal issues.
Having no public record likely doesn't help the case, neither.
If an objection -is- raised, and if the person objecting is an
actual copyright holder of certain Truecrypt code, then that
particular code can thereafter be rewritten. Other than this,
objections are unlikely to be legally substantive and may well be
able to be ignored. Notwithstanding, all objections should be
responded to as to what position is being taken in relation to
that objection (this is part of the duty of care to the general
public/ others in our community).
Careful, I very much misinterpreted that paragraph at first. My
original reply would have said "Wait, I may misunderstand this
paragraph, but it sounds like you're saying that code affected by
direct objections *CAN*, but needs not, be rewritten later on and
that any objections would have no legal binding whatsoever anyway
and can be ignored?"
I assume that what you actually meant is that objections by
non-contributors have no legal binding and can be ignored, which is
true, but also a tautologism.
The suggested approach sounds HIGHLY questionable to me. I
personally fully support the intention, but strictly oppose the
Il 07/08/19 14:29, Zenaan Harkness ha scritto:
Corporations use tacit consent regularly too - Uber gets going in a
new city, and they assume the right to operate in the face of the
existing laws about Taxi cabs etc, and build they user base quickly
enough that by the time any court case gets going, they can have
financial, legal and government clout to get the laws changed - but
until that change happens, they operate under TACIT CONSENT - tacit
consent of the people, and tacit consent of the government.
There is no law saying that you cannot operate cabs.
Actually, there is
something like this somewhere, and in those places Uber cannot operate.
But this has nothing to do with our case, because in fact there is a law saying that you cannot modify or redistributed other people's
copyrighted code unless you have explicit permission.
Just because we are normally not taught about tacit consent, does not
mean that tacit consent does not exist, or is not used on a daily
basis all over the planet.
Yes, but for other things.
|Location:||Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, UK|
|Nodes:||8 (1 / 7)|