On Wed, 2006-03-08 at 17:24 +0100, Ralf Corsepius wrote:
On Wed, 2006-03-08 at 11:09 +0100, Iago Rubio wrote:
> On Tue, 2006-03-07 at 12:49 +0100, Ralf Corsepius wrote:
> > On Tue, 2006-03-07 at 11:12 +0000, Jose' Matos wrote:
> > > While searching for tags used in the License field for Extras I got this
> > > result:
> > > 1 GPL version 2 or newer
> > > 1 GPL version 2 or later.
> > > 1 GPL version 2 or later
> > > 1 GPLv2
> > IMO, all these above are superfluous and should be changed into
> > because current "GPL" always implies "GPLv2 or
> Not all authors agree with this.
> [quote from="http://lkml.org/lkml/2006/1/25/273"
The GPL and must not be modified:
I don't see your point here. This does not means that GPL "always
implies GPLv2 or later/newer".
If you think that the GPL license makes mandatory the use of the "any
later version" clause - unless modified - then you're wrong.
Just read point nine(*) on the GPL.
GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE
Version 2, June 1991
Copyright (C) 1989, 1991 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
59 Temple Place, Suite 330, Boston, MA 02111-1307 USA
Everyone is permitted to copy and distribute verbatim copies
of this license document, but changing it is not allowed.
Note the last sentence.
I.e. any package claiming to be GPL'ed must be licensed with "this
GPL" (rsp. predecessors or successors) or it doesn't qualify as GPLed.
Unfortunately I don't know what you mean with "rsp." here.
What's clear is most packages are licensed with this GPL and "any later
version", some are licensed with a specific version of the GPL.
If the GPL tag always implies GPLv2 or later/newer - as you said - then
it should exist a different tag to identify packages that don't allow
newer or/nor later versions.
> The Linux kernel has always been under the GPL v2. Nothing else
> ever been valid.
> The "version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version"
> language in the GPL copying file is not - and has never been - part of the
> actual License itself. It's part of the _explanatory_ text that talks
> about how to apply the license to your program, and it says that _if_ you
> want to accept any later versions of the GPL, you can state so in your
> source code.
> So at least the GPLv2 one - being it the Linux kernel - should remain
I don't understand what you want to say here.
Are you trying to say, that we should emphasize there different versions
of the GPL in an rpm's "license:" tag?
No I'm not. I've never said that.
I'm just trying to say that GPL does not automatically implies newer
versions, so I see no gain on limiting packages released with specific
versions of the license, to the "GPL" tag.
To be more clear: I don't think there's a gain on changing the kernel's
license tag from GPLv2 - or "GPL version 2" - to "GPL", when it's
that this package is release *only* under version 2 of the GPL license.
I don't see much sense in this, because
1. An rpm's "license:" tag is informative, and by no means can be
considered legally binding. The legally binding text is that contained
in the detached license text and that contained in individual source
Even while it's true - changing the license tag won't change the
package's license - you can be liable for errors caused by a bogus
license tag, so it has its legal caveats as well.
As example: someone distributing a GPLed rpm package under BSD is sued,
but he proves on court that the package when queried identifies itself
as BSD licensed. For sure the judge will want to speak with the packager
2. At present, practically all "GPL'ed" packages are
GPLv1 is dead for 15 years and GPLv3 has not been released yet.
As I said, most GPL packages are "version 2 and any later", others are
"only version 2".
It does not means the same now, and won't mean the same when GPL version
3 get released.
I.e. as I see it, a license:-tag "GPL" is identical to
I think GPL means "GPL v2 or any later/newer" or "any GPL" - and you
seemed to agree with this some lines above - and GPLv2 means "only
version 2 of the GPL license". May be the wording is not right and it
should read "GPL version 2" for clarity.
Said that, I think this discussion is moot. The license tag should be
something to study in a package per package basis, and in the case of
the package tagged as "GPLv2", it will be less informative to change
this tag to "GPL" than let it unchanged.
(*) At http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/gpl.html
point nine it's stated:
"Each version is given a distinguishing version number."
And then two special cases:
1) If the package states the version which applies to it and "any later
version" - quoted in the original - you can use the current or any newer
version of the GPL.
2) If the package states no version, you can use any version.
So not all GPL packages *must* be released with the "any later version"
clause, it just states they *can* be released with this clause.
The only other reference to the "any later version" clause on the
license terms, is in the example on "How to Apply These Terms to Your
New Programs", which is written below the "END OF TERMS AND CONDITIONS".
So reading the GPL it's clear that:
1) You can specify a version of the GPL on your program.
2) You can specify no version, so any version of the GPL could be
3) You can specify a version number, with the phrase "and any later
version" if you want to give the freedom to license your program with
any later version of the GPL.