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Date:   Thu, 9 Nov 2017 11:44:03 +0100
From:   Greg Kroah-Hartman <>
To:     Daniel Lezcano <>
Cc:     Linus Torvalds <>,
        Linux Kernel Mailing List <>
Subject: Re: Legal question: Author, Sign-off, Company Copyright and gmail

On Thu, Nov 09, 2017 at 10:45:27AM +0100, Daniel Lezcano wrote:
> Hi all,
> I noticed a practice when the patches are submitted where I'm a bit
> confused about how it fits with the DCO.
> People are creating gmail accounts to send patches on behalf of their
> company because the company's email configuration does not allow to send
> patches or adds extra infos, or whatever...
> That ends up with patches submitted by a gmail account with no history
> and verifiable origin and new files containing a company copyright [1].

If there is a question, just ask.

> At the first glance I would say, it is not allowed, and if a company is
> willing to do opensource, it should provide the tools to its employees
> to do so. But I don't want block patch submission if this practice is
> tolerated.

Fixing the use of a company's email server is outside of almost all
Linux kernel divisions.  As one such example, Red Hat has a system that
messes with patches :)

I only know of one company that uses Exchange that has "fixed it" enough
to allow their developers to send patches out that are not corrupted
(and no, it's not Microsoft).  Preventing all of those companies, or
those that use Lotus Notes, or any other horrid email system, from
contributing to kernel development is not a good idea.

> What is the policy in this case ?

I just ask all new contributors who they work for, and so we then know,
it's not that big of a deal.


greg k-h

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