What good is VNC's GPL?
mbmiller "at" taxa.epi.umn.edu
Mon Apr 4 04:46:00 2005
On Sun, 3 Apr 2005, William Hooper wrote:
> Mike Miller wrote:
>> RealVNC has developed an Enterprise edition that is not being
>> distributed under the GPL. I assume that the Enterprise edition
>> contains GPL code from the old RealVNC. I also believe that this is OK
>> because the RealVNC team owns the copyright on the GPL code and they
>> are allowed to use it in non-GPL products. Am I right?
>> If I am right about that, is RealVNC not also allowed to let other
>> companies buy the right to use GPL'd code to create non-GPL software?
>> If so, then isn't it OK for a suspected GPL violator to ignore queries
>> from anyone other than the copyright owner?
> Yes. The copyright owner is the only person that has a legal right to
> enforce the GPL.
Thanks, William. That was very clear. That gpl-faq.html document really
does the trick.
Apparently, if individuals developed code that was added to the RealVNC
code base, and that code was copyrighted by those individuals, their code
was also licensed under the GPL and that additional code could not be used
in a RealVNC Enterprise edition unless the Enterprise Edition was also
free software licensed under the GPL. So I assume this means that the
RealVNC Enterprise edition does not use GPL'd code copyrighted by people
outside of the RealVNC company, unless those people have allowed RealVNC
to use their code.