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Licensing question: looking for pointers, not legal advise [message #50167] Tue, 06 November 2007 18:34 Go to next message
Eclipse UserFriend
Originally posted by: eclipse6.rizzoweb.com

I know that none of us are qualified to give legal advise, but I don't
know where else to ask so here goes.
What is the situation with using non-code artifacts from Eclipse?
Specifically I'm looking at icons and images that are shipped with an
Eclipse plugin. EPL does not seem to address non-code artifacts; to the
contrary, it is very specific to indicate 'source code' and/or 'object
code' - that said, should we consider an icon 'object code'?
Are there any pointers to opinion or research on this?

TIA,
Eric
Re: Licensing question: looking for pointers, not legal advise [message #50197 is a reply to message #50167] Tue, 06 November 2007 19:59 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Eclipse UserFriend
Originally posted by: merks.ca.ibm.com

Eric,

Hey, I'm not a lawyer, so this is just my take. I think you should
consider imagines to be both source code and object code at once. If
you copy an image and reuse it without change, that's no different from
what you can do with source code or object code. If you modify it,
well, it's derivative work and it's still EPL so you have to share it
and expect that others can copy it and do the same thing. Do you think
there might be something more subtle involved?


Eric Rizzo wrote:
> I know that none of us are qualified to give legal advise, but I don't
> know where else to ask so here goes.
> What is the situation with using non-code artifacts from Eclipse?
> Specifically I'm looking at icons and images that are shipped with an
> Eclipse plugin. EPL does not seem to address non-code artifacts; to
> the contrary, it is very specific to indicate 'source code' and/or
> 'object code' - that said, should we consider an icon 'object code'?
> Are there any pointers to opinion or research on this?
>
> TIA,
> Eric
Re: Licensing question: looking for pointers, not legal advise [message #50227 is a reply to message #50197] Wed, 07 November 2007 00:36 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Charlie Kelly is currently offline Charlie KellyFriend
Messages: 276
Registered: July 2009
Senior Member
Hi Ed and Eric,

The same questions might apply to things like documentation, or bugzilla
logs.

Do either of you know the status of these questions for case studies on
the Eclipse website ?

Charlie


Ed Merks wrote:
> Eric,
>
> Hey, I'm not a lawyer, so this is just my take. I think you should
> consider imagines to be both source code and object code at once. If
> you copy an image and reuse it without change, that's no different from
> what you can do with source code or object code. If you modify it,
> well, it's derivative work and it's still EPL so you have to share it
> and expect that others can copy it and do the same thing. Do you think
> there might be something more subtle involved?
>
>
> Eric Rizzo wrote:
>> I know that none of us are qualified to give legal advise, but I don't
>> know where else to ask so here goes.
>> What is the situation with using non-code artifacts from Eclipse?
>> Specifically I'm looking at icons and images that are shipped with an
>> Eclipse plugin. EPL does not seem to address non-code artifacts; to
>> the contrary, it is very specific to indicate 'source code' and/or
>> 'object code' - that said, should we consider an icon 'object code'?
>> Are there any pointers to opinion or research on this?
>>
>> TIA,
>> Eric
Re: Licensing question: looking for pointers, not legal advise [message #50344 is a reply to message #50227] Wed, 07 November 2007 13:18 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Eclipse UserFriend
Originally posted by: merks.ca.ibm.com

Charlie,

I think all documentation is EPL so generally copying it and changing it
is something where you should consider the result to be EPL and should
publish it. This is sometimes a bit problematic if you consider that
documentation often contains sample code or examples that folks are
likely to modify and change. And certainly the authors generally intend
that samples and examples should be copied and modified, but it's
clearly getting into unfortunate legal a gray zone. I doubt the
foundation would ever pursue a case of someone copying and modifying an
example or sample. Everything attached to or appended to a bugzilla is
also EPL.

Even questions about things like EMF's code generator come up
semi-regularly. I've always argued that while the templates are EPL but
the results they produce are the IP of the owner of the model that was
feed into the template just as a compiler might be any arbitrary license
but the byte code it produces is still the IP of the person who fed in
the source code. Technically if folks copy EMF's templates to modify
them, they should share these results, but we now have many of include
points where folks can just provide a snippet of a template that's
include in a larger template without modifying the base template;
neither technique is all that different, but I suppose that different
legal rules do apply...

Even Eric's question as an interesting loophole to consider. E.g., if
you compose an image at runtime by overlaying, you've not actually
modified the base image so technically there's be nothing to give back.
Developers are very creative people at finding how best to exploit rules
to their advantage. After all, that's what programming is all about...


Charlie Kelly wrote:
> Hi Ed and Eric,
>
> The same questions might apply to things like documentation, or
> bugzilla logs.
>
> Do either of you know the status of these questions for case studies
> on the Eclipse website ?
>
> Charlie
>
>
> Ed Merks wrote:
>> Eric,
>>
>> Hey, I'm not a lawyer, so this is just my take. I think you should
>> consider imagines to be both source code and object code at once. If
>> you copy an image and reuse it without change, that's no different
>> from what you can do with source code or object code. If you modify
>> it, well, it's derivative work and it's still EPL so you have to
>> share it and expect that others can copy it and do the same thing.
>> Do you think there might be something more subtle involved?
>>
>>
>> Eric Rizzo wrote:
>>> I know that none of us are qualified to give legal advise, but I
>>> don't know where else to ask so here goes.
>>> What is the situation with using non-code artifacts from Eclipse?
>>> Specifically I'm looking at icons and images that are shipped with
>>> an Eclipse plugin. EPL does not seem to address non-code artifacts;
>>> to the contrary, it is very specific to indicate 'source code'
>>> and/or 'object code' - that said, should we consider an icon 'object
>>> code'?
>>> Are there any pointers to opinion or research on this?
>>>
>>> TIA,
>>> Eric
Re: Licensing question: looking for pointers, not legal advise [message #50371 is a reply to message #50344] Wed, 07 November 2007 23:58 Go to previous message
Eclipse UserFriend
Originally posted by: no.ddress.here

Unfortunately, no answers or advice. Some thoughts made just to advance
the discussion:

The EPL, like the CPL, is specific to just "source code and
documentation." Icons ill fit the common notion of source code, but
they do communicate ideas, implicitly describing user available actions
and operations, explaining what options are available when and where.
So, from that perspective, do they not reasonably well fit the common
notion of documentation?

The EPL publication requirement is basically triggered by the act of
publication, if only based on the interpretation given by
http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/library/os-cplfaq.html Answer #17. If
that is the case, a reasonable conclusion might well be that dynamically
generated derivatives that are themselves not further distributed are
not subject to the EPL publication requirement.

With regards to incidental incorporation of EPL source code and/or
documentation, a consideration might be copyright fair use. The basic
(US) judicially considered factors are:
1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is
of commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
2) the nature of the copyrighted work;
3) amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the
copyrighted work as a whole; and
4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the
copyrighted work.

If the incidental incorporation is minimal, essential, clearly
consistent with the design of the Program, only serves to increase the
value and repute of the Program, etc, etc, then fair use may be your
ticket out. Of course, actually balancing those factors is tricky - if
you remember, the GPL-folk got into a bit of a twist early on trying to
figure whether to handle Bison, which employs code generation templates,
as a fair use issue or to carve out an exception. In the end, they took
the explicit exception route.

Standard complete legal advice disclaimers apply.


In article <fgsds4$4a1$1@build.eclipse.org>, merks@ca.ibm.com says...
> Charlie,
>
> I think all documentation is EPL so generally copying it and changing it
> is something where you should consider the result to be EPL and should
> publish it. This is sometimes a bit problematic if you consider that
> documentation often contains sample code or examples that folks are
> likely to modify and change. And certainly the authors generally intend
> that samples and examples should be copied and modified, but it's
> clearly getting into unfortunate legal a gray zone. I doubt the
> foundation would ever pursue a case of someone copying and modifying an
> example or sample. Everything attached to or appended to a bugzilla is
> also EPL.
>
> Even questions about things like EMF's code generator come up
> semi-regularly. I've always argued that while the templates are EPL but
> the results they produce are the IP of the owner of the model that was
> feed into the template just as a compiler might be any arbitrary license
> but the byte code it produces is still the IP of the person who fed in
> the source code. Technically if folks copy EMF's templates to modify
> them, they should share these results, but we now have many of include
> points where folks can just provide a snippet of a template that's
> include in a larger template without modifying the base template;
> neither technique is all that different, but I suppose that different
> legal rules do apply...
>
> Even Eric's question as an interesting loophole to consider. E.g., if
> you compose an image at runtime by overlaying, you've not actually
> modified the base image so technically there's be nothing to give back.
> Developers are very creative people at finding how best to exploit rules
> to their advantage. After all, that's what programming is all about...
>
>
> Charlie Kelly wrote:
> > Hi Ed and Eric,
> >
> > The same questions might apply to things like documentation, or
> > bugzilla logs.
> >
> > Do either of you know the status of these questions for case studies
> > on the Eclipse website ?
> >
> > Charlie
> >
> >
> > Ed Merks wrote:
> >> Eric,
> >>
> >> Hey, I'm not a lawyer, so this is just my take. I think you should
> >> consider imagines to be both source code and object code at once. If
> >> you copy an image and reuse it without change, that's no different
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