[lug] Google Chrome Linux "distribution"

Zan Lynx zlynx at acm.org
Thu Jul 9 13:23:04 MDT 2009

Davide Del Vento wrote:
> Zan,
> I'm not sure I'm understanding correctly what you wrote. But if I did,
> I think you misunderstood the Affero license.
> IANAL, either, so I'll speak in plain English instead of legalese.
> The Affero license is like the "plain" GPL, with the only difference
> that is considered "distribution" (the new legalese word is convey,
> but I like distribution better) ALSO "remote execution".
> So, for example, if I give you my GPL executable and you run it on
> your machine, that's distribution, and according to both GPL and
> Affero I must give you the source code. I suspect we agree here.
> On the other hand, if I don't give you my executable, but leave it
> running on my machine(s), and give you an account, so that you can
> login there and "remotely use" my program, that's NOT distribution
> according to GPL, but it is according to Affero.

But it isn't legally.

AFAIK there is no such legal thing as "remote execution". You send a 
request to the server, it runs the program and sends back output. The 
output isn't copyrighted. The owner of the server hasn't done anything 
requiring a copyright license, so how does Affero matter? The owner of 
the server never has to agree to Affero in order to possess, modify, 
execute the code or to distribute its output.

Zan Lynx
zlynx at acm.org

"Knowledge is Power.  Power Corrupts.  Study Hard.  Be Evil."

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