Arjan van de Ven <arjan(a)fenrus.demon.nl> wrote:
On Sun, 2006-07-30 at 15:50 +0200, Denis Leroy wrote:
> Peter Gordon wrote:
> > Christian Fredrik Kalager Schaller wrote:
> >> The Nvidia drivers (or ATI ones) are not 'illegal'. The slides you
> >> to doesn't even claim they are. [...]
> > No disrespect intended, but did you even read those slides? The 13th
> > slide that Greg KH has on his site explicitly states - in big bold red
> > lettering: "Closed source Linux kernel modules are illegal."
> The problem is obviously that it's not up to him to decide.
I think you're mistaken there. Since Greg is one of the authors
kernel, to a large degree it IS up to him to decide under what terms
people get to use the parts of the kernel he wrote. Now Greg is a nice
guy and he makes them available under a restricted but open license
(generally called "GPL version 2"), but still.
The point is that the kernel is available under GPLv2, and /that/ decides
what is (or isn't) allowed. Sure, any reasonable judge will take into
(some) account the wishes of the author(s) (in general, owners of the
relevant copyrights) where the license isn't crystal clear, but what those
areas are (and what the law/the judge says about them) isn't Greg's call.
The nVidia (et al) folks certainly did look into the matter, and I'd bet
their lawyers told them there was no (or just a very tiny) chance for them
doing wrong before they went ahead, so I'd guess Greg is mistaken. Also
remember that the code was written by a collection of thousands, it isn't
easy to ask all them (and then weigh their opinions according to some
"importance of contribution" measure...).
Dr. Horst H. von Brand User #22616 counter.li.org
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