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Copyright vs. patents, source code vs. compiled binaries, etc., [TOS #5: split from “Open Source Fraunhofer AAC Encoder”/thread 95989]
saratoga
post Jul 12 2012, 21:01
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QUOTE (benski @ Jul 12 2012, 15:31) *
I am not a lawyer, but here is the part of the license that is problematic for use of this source code in other projects
CODE
  51 3.    NO PATENT LICENSE
  52
  53 NO EXPRESS OR IMPLIED LICENSES TO ANY PATENT CLAIMS, including without limitation the patents of Fraunhofer,
  54 ARE GRANTED BY THIS SOFTWARE LICENSE. Fraunhofer provides no warranty of patent non-infringement with
  55 respect to this software.
  56
  57 You may use this FDK AAC Codec software or modifications thereto only for purposes that are authorized
  58 by appropriate patent licenses.



I don't think that would be a problem for most open source licenses. Off hand I can't think of any that force you to also provide patent licenses to go with the software license, since in practice that would be almost impossible to know which patents were covered and which were not. IIUC, that basically leaves you in the same place as the GPL, you're allowed under copyright law but patent law is up to you and your country.
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Garf
post Jul 12 2012, 21:56
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QUOTE (saratoga @ Jul 12 2012, 22:01) *
Off hand I can't think of any that force you to also provide patent licenses to go with the software license, since in practice that would be almost impossible to know which patents were covered and which were not.


GPL includes a patent license for all patents you own and apply to the software. You'd obviously know which of your own patents applies.

At least in GPL3 there are also provisions that block you from relying on a patent license to be able to convey a work covered by one. (But I find the clauses a bit strange because they are null as long as you also convey source code - which the GPL requires you anyway?)

But yes, no open source license requires you to acquire licenses for any patent the software might infringe before you can distribute it - because that's obviously impossible.
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Caroliano
post Aug 8 2012, 23:53
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But then you actually allow citizens of countries with non-retarded patent laws to exercise their rights. For example, from the LAME FAQ linked earlier in this thread:

QUOTE
Note that under German Patent Law, §11(1) a patent doesn't cover
private acts with non-industrial purposes. Probably interesting for
developers is that a patent doesn't cover acts with experimental
purposes, that aim at the object of the patented invention (§11(2)).


But I'm not a patent lawyer either. BTW, that is also why I think that a patent law is broken if everyone and their mother must worry about it...

This post has been edited by Caroliano: Aug 8 2012, 23:55
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