synaptics driver MIT license approach

Daniel Stone daniel at
Tue May 8 12:58:25 PDT 2007

On Tue, May 08, 2007 at 11:08:25AM -0700, Yan Seiner wrote:
> Colin Guthrie wrote:
> >Not wanting to be morbid or a harbinger of doom, but what would happen
> >if one of the above has passed away? Would that stop the relicense
> >attempt for e.g. 25 years (or however long copyright is these days/in
> >your territory of choice), or could you ask their executor of their
> >estate? Or do you just say, "sod it they're awa' the crow road so who
> >cares!!" and relicense anyway?!!!
> >
> >Just some idle thoughts from an idle mind. I'd love to see synaptics
> >come under the Xorg wing.
> Isn't there some kind of 'quiet title' provision in the license?  Seems 
> to me that this sort of thing should be handled.  Say you attempt to 
> contact the author, his/her last known employer, post on mailing lists 
> s/he used to frequent, and if you don't get a response for say 6 months 
> the license can be changed?
> Just mulling out loud....

No, because that's absolutely insane.

'We tried contacting you to relicense your GPL code to BSD, but
couldn't, so we just put it in our proprietary app.  Cheers!'

Copyright passes to the estate if someone dies, so you can convince the
executioner to do as you like.  But if you simply can't find the person,
or they don't want to talk to you -- bad luck.

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