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> why the GPL is drafted as a contract

The GPL is not a contract. See, e.g., [0] or [1].

[0] Jones, P. "The GPL Is a License, not a Contract" https://lwn.net/Articles/61292/

[1] Moglen, E. "Enforcing the GNU GPL" https://www.gnu.org/philosophy/enforcing-gpl.en.html




Wow that's a very poor article from LWN. "License" is an American concept that doesn't exist in France and much of the world.

See this article, section "French Law" with some explanations https://thehftguy.com/2020/09/15/french-judge-rules-gpl-lice...


> "License" is an American concept that doesn't exist in France and much of the world.

The concept of license exists in France even if the word used is different. In common law countries, we say that a contract must be supported by obligations on at least two parties in order to be enforceable. What we call a license fails that requirement because it is one-sided and merely gives permission to do something, usually with conditions. But the distinction is largely academic and the concepts are similar (e.g., permission to do a thing is functionally the same as a promise not to sue if the person does the thing). From your article, it appears that the word contrat is used in France for for both bilateral contracts and these types of permissive use agreements, e.g. contrat d’utilisation, which seems perfectly reasonable because of how similar the concepts are. So, the concept clearly exists in France even if the word used is different.

Similarly, the rights that common law countries call copyright are encompassed by Author's Rights, specifically the "economic rights". Author's Rights, however, also include "moral rights" that are not a part of copyright. Those rights may also exist in common law countries, but they may fall under some other area of law, such as "Right of Publicity" or "Right of Personality".

In both examples the concepts and rights exist (mostly) in various legal systems, even if the words used are different or if the rights are found in different sections of the law.




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