Re: [Gimp-developer] HELP with SYMBOLIC icon theme for Gimp.


in matter of the unclear license situation I asked the FSF
for clarification and like to share their answer (see below).
It's not a legal advice, but I hope it sheds us some light
on the issue.


On  11.10.2013 at 02:48 A.M., Yoni Rabkin via RT wrote:

> I'm writing as a contributor to the GIMP open source project.  We're
> currently in the situation that we'd like to add more UI themes to our
> project. We found a suitable icon set in the GNOME project
> (  Our project is
> under the GPL 3 (parts of it under the LGPL), the existing UI theme I
> currently have in mind is under the GPL and the desired icon theme is
> licensed under the CCBYSA3.  Currently we're unsure whether the
> CCBYSA3 artwork can be combined with the GPL code (and the GPL theme
> if we decided to use it).  How is the FSF's position about it? Can
> they be combined or has the icon set to be relicensed under the GPL?
> I already read your license compatibility list, but unfortunately the
> latest CCBYSA license mentioned there is of version 2.  Could you also
> update the list, please?

The CC-BY-SA licenses and the GNU GPL are mutually incompatible because
both are copyleft licenses; they both require that derivatives be
licensed under the same terms, and it is therefore impossible to
simultaneously satisfy both licenses.

But that is only true when the works are mutually derivative, and it
isn't clear that this is the case. The position of the GPL Compliance
Lab has been that if the software is merely displaying the icons, could
just as well display any others, and doesn't rely on specific attributes
of those particular icons then they shouldn't be considered derivatives
and could be distributed alongside the GPL'd work in mere aggregation

Please bear in mind that we aren't lawyers and this isn't legal
advice. Also note that it isn't necessarily a given that the icon's
copyright holder/s hold the same position about derivatives.

I hope this sheds some light on the issue. Please feel free to write
back with any further questions.

I am not a lawyer, the above is not legal advice

   Regards, Yoni Rabkin

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