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Subject: Re: [boost] [simd] Hardware support
From: Niall Douglas (s_sourceforge_at_[hidden])
Date: 2017-04-09 21:03:09

>> If copyright weren't a problem, I'd suggest the Apache 2.0 licence which
>> gives stronger guarantees to the end user (a Boost library doesn't
>> actually have to have the Boost licence, it's just strongly
>> recommended). But you don't own the copyright to the entire library.
> The library only has NumScale copyright notices, so they claim ownership of
> the library, and could re-license it.

They could relicence *subsequent editions* of it, but not any already
released edition. Just the same as Oracle made subsequent editions of
ZFS proprietary, but could not retract the licence for already released

> AFAIK the Boost Software License requires keeping the copyright notices of
> any work it is derived from, so this is a violation of the BSL.
> Boost.SIMD is derived from the NT2 library which was a BSL-licensed
> collaboration between various parties.
> I warned NumScale about this a few years ago, but they dismissed it.

It would be highly common for a software startup being spun out of a
university to have the ownership of any relevant IP held by the
university transferred or sold to it. Because the startup owns the
copyright, and is not a licensee, it can do anything it likes with the
copyrighted IP, including deleting any text such as prior copyright
notices. You only need preserve licence notices where the licence you
are placed under demands it because you don't own the IP and can't do
whatever you want.

Now, as to whether misrepresenting the provenance of software is moral
or not is another question, but if you own the IP, it's legal. And it is
certainly common in the industry, one contract I had with a household
name multinational had me convert a third party software library over to
eliminate all evidence of its true origin. They had bought a full owning
copy from the IP originators, which is also possible BTW, but now it was
theirs it laboriously needed to be made to look so.


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