[Bf-committers] GPL or (c) infringement?

Martin Dickopp martin at zero-based.org
Thu Mar 10 20:17:47 CET 2005

"Robert Wenzlaff (AB8TD)" <rwenzlaff at soylent-green.com> writes:

> On Thursday 10 March 2005 04:50, Ton Roosendaal wrote:
>> apart from infringing copyright of used images, 
> I think he can be hit for $1000 minimum stautory damages _per image_.

Warning: I am not a lawyer; I am not an American.

The violator appears to be in the USA. My understanding of US copyright
law is that statutory damages can only be claimed for works which have
been registered with the US Copyright Office of the Library of Congress.
Otherwise, the copyright holder has to prove if and how much monetary
damage she or he has suffered.

Irrespective of that, the copyright holders of the images can of course
demand that they are removed from the web site.

> Well, to comply with the GPL, he has to offer the sources for free in
> the same form he offers the binary.

He either has to include the source on the CD, or he has to accompany it
with a written offer to provide the source to *anyone* for the cost of
copying (Section 3b of the GPL).

> So other actions would be for a bunch of people to request Source CD's
> and if he doesn't comply, then he is in violatin of the GPL and the
> FSF can take him to court.

Only the copyright holder can take him to court.

What is colloquially called a "license violation" is really a copyright
violation, i.e. you can't sue for license violation, but you can sue for
copyright infringement.

> To be fair it looks like this guy is doing it a lot.  I see him selling 
> OpenOffice as "Platinum Office Suite",  MySQL, Several Audio recording Apps 
> that I don't recognize,

I recoginze Audacity, a GPL-licensed sound editor.

> A 2D CAD package (that I'd like to find, so I know where to D/L it).

Looks like QCad: http://www.qcad.org/


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