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Date: Fri, 9 May 2014 21:16:28 -0700
From: "Dennis E. Hamilton" <>
To: <>
Subject: RE: [PHC] PHS API copyright?

Yes, Software did not have copyright until the 1976 revision of the Copyright code.
The original expression (not the part that is from another source) in all software is a copyrighted work the minute it is put in tangible form.  So the original part of your PHS contribution is already copyright by you.
Those BSD and GPL notices incorporated in files do not change their copyright status, they simply prescribe the allowable use by offering an automatic license that is available so long as the terms and conditions are honored.  I don’t know what you put in the headings of your files, but if you want to be clear, it is important to be explicit about what the automatic license is to be, if any.  And if you have made a derivative of (parts of) other work, the licenses on those works must be honored by you.
For the most part, programs are used the way their authors intended and there is no harm and no foul.  
What we’re seeing here is a dispute among two commercial actors.  Oracle certainly wants people to use their “API” (as clarified by the court concerning what “API” is in the context of Java).  Oracle claims commercial harm in the resultant “fork.”  Apparently, the OpenJDK license was not something Google was willing to honor.  We’ll see how it goes when the fair-use question is retried.
-   Dennis
From: Bill Cox [] 
Sent: Friday, May 9, 2014 17:49
Subject: Re: [PHC] PHS API copyright?
On Fri, May 9, 2014 at 8:42 PM, Dennis E. Hamilton < <> > wrote:
See  <> for an extensive account given in the ruling itself in the “Background” section.
Thanks for the link. I read: The jury found that Google infringed Oracle’s copyrights in the 37 Java packages and a specific computer routine called “rangeCheck,”
Oracle succeeded in copyrighting their API.  Had this happened in the days of Unix, God only knows what kind of computing we'd have today.

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