[Discussioni] Repost: GPL and NDA

Alessandro Rubini rubini a gnu.org
Mar 16 Ott 2001 16:17:24 CEST

Ho avuto la risposta da licensing alla domanda del 18 {Agosto,Settembre}.

 From: Free Software Foundation <licensing a gnu.org>
 To: Alessandro Rubini <rubini a gnu.org>
 Subject: Re: GPL and NDA
 Date: 16 Oct 2001 14:01:53 -0000

Alessandro Rubini <rubini a gnu.org> wrote:
> Hello (please read it all before starting to reply, as I already have
> some answers)
> In the italian discussion list (discussioni a softwarelibero.org) one
> member asked what happens when GPL software is enhanced by a company
> that then requires places an NDA on all of it's own production. Is use
> by an employee allowed or not?
> While a thread on fsb a crynwr.com explains that distribution happens only
> when the software crosses a legal boundary -- so internal use in a company
> means use by employees as well, as long as they are not authorized to use
> the software outside of the company -- our doubts are about misbehaving
> companies.
> If the company distributes the derived software under NDA, what of these
> two happen?
> 	A- the NDA is invalid and the recipient can use the GPL rights
> 	B- the NDA is valid and the recipient cannot use the software at all
> 		because of GPL.7 ("If you cannot ... not ... at all").
> I thought point B above applies, since the GPL can't invalidate
> another contract (the NDA) that the recipient signed. Other people
> however thinks that point A applies.
A company may not distribute derived GPL software under an NDA without 
violating the GPL and thereby contributing copyright infringement.  
> BTW: if you could also clarify what was the legal hack used by the Trillian
> project to work under NDA for some time with GNU code, I'd be interested
> to know.
They worked only internally, and did not distribute the code at all.  This is
perfectly legal and not a hack.
-David "Novalis" Turner,
Licensing Question Volunteer,
Free Software Foundation

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