[ntp:questions] poll interval - RFC compliance question

David L. Mills mills at udel.edu
Thu Jun 19 19:22:06 UTC 2008


I don't know if Linux has modified the tree, but there are lots of 
copyrighted files, including many of the refclock drivers and options 
stuff. A list of all known and attributed contributors is on the 
copytright.html page. Some of these go back to 1988.


John Ackermann N8UR wrote:
> Unruh said the following on 06/15/2008 11:35 AM:
>>Yes, it is pedantry, since the copyright is automatic and does not need to
>>be asserted. Ie, that notice is infomational, not a legal requirement. 
>>It simply informs the reader as to who actually owns the copyright. What is
>>not mere pedantry is where or not this claim is actually true. Many people
>>have contributed to ntpd, and unless they all transfered copyright to David
>>Mills, then the claim that he owns the copyright is really false. They all
>>do (David has copyright interest in all of the works since the other
>>people's work is derivative of his work, but others have copyright interest
>>as well.) To keep things perfectly clean, David shoule ask anyone who
>>contributes to transfer their copyright to him. 
> While the notice is not mandatory, it does have legal value -- in
> particular, it negates a defense of innocent infringement.  And, to
> claim the international protection of the UCC treaty I referred to in my
> other message, you do need to include the notice.
> Your point about whether the copyright notice is accurate is
> interesting.  I wonder if it would even be possible at this point to
> determine who all the contributors are!
> I thought that Linux used the CREDITS file as a list of copyright
> holders, but I just looked at some source and that doesn't appear to be
> the case -- instead, each source file has its own copyright notice in
> the name of one or more people, with the COPYING file not listing any
> copyright owners at all.  I guess that has the effect of putting the
> whole kernel tree under the GPL, but the resulting object file(s) as a
> collective work of all the contributors.
> I just looked at the ntp 4.2.0 source (the only tree I have handy at the
> moment) and the random source files I looked at do not have any
> copyright notice at all, so the Linux model doesn't appear to be in place.
> John

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