[Mageia-dev] Clarification on firmware licenses

Pascal Terjan pterjan at gmail.com
Sat Jan 15 20:55:10 CET 2011

On Sat, Jan 15, 2011 at 19:34, Thomas Backlund <tmb at iki.fi> wrote:
> Anssi Hannula skrev 15.1.2011 21:00:
>> Hi all!
>> Sorry for bringing this stuff up again, but it seems there is still some
>> confusion regarding firmware licenses and to which repository put the
>> various firmware packages.
>> Clear cases:
>> - open-source firmware with source code goes to core
>> - firmware which doesn't allow modifications or has other similar
>>   restrictions goes to non-free
>> However, what to do with firmware that is licensed under a free license
>> (e.g. BSD/GPL) that doesn't have source code?
>> There are quite a few of those (see e.g. [1]).
>> A quick look at other distros shows the following:
>> Debian:
>>  - All firmware without source code goes to non-free.
> This is exactly how I have planned to clean up the firmware,
> but I have not had the time yet...

I don't agree on that.
A firmware under BSD licence is free data in my opinion whether or not
it comes with source.
On the opposite, anything under GPL without source "can't exist"...
Either we consider it is GPL and we should be able to get source if
requested and it has no reason to be in non-free, or it is not under
GPL and can not be redistributed

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