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I came across a non-commercial software which is closed source and packages a GPL licensed library. So I had to ask a question in that regards. So should it me SO or Programmers? Can I question the legality of the situation in hand by describing the exact situation with reference to the actual case?

Even if I am not going to use legal means to get the code, should I inform the GPL side of the situation(who I most probably think is unaware of it)?

  • What's your question? It it about how to develop against the software? Your first port of call should be the developers of the library. – ChrisF Sep 22 '13 at 12:55
  • @ChrisF the thing is that after contacting the provider/developer of a software for the source, it was told that we don't provide the source although they had packaged a GPL licensed library along with there software. So I wanted to know what kind of steps can/should I take, is that a clear violation and the above said questions. – Bleeding Fingers Sep 22 '13 at 13:00
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    Ah. So it's a question about a possible violation of the GPL licence? It's definitely not Stack Overflow and, as a possible legal question, it's probably not suitable for Programmers. We're not lawyers. – ChrisF Sep 22 '13 at 13:27
  • @ChrisF true. but we have to deal with all that kind of stuff and be careful about them when developing software. The GPL/licenses was/were made by/for programmers. – Bleeding Fingers Sep 22 '13 at 13:34
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    Although licensing questions are typically on topic, are you trying to understand the license or seek legal action? We can't tell you what legal means you can use to get the source. If you want to understand how the GPL interacts with closed-source projects, you'll need to provide specifics (how is the GPL library linked, what version of the GPL is it released under, is it dual licensed) - that may be on-topic. – Thomas Owens Sep 22 '13 at 18:52
  • @ThomasOwens can I question the legality of the situation in hand by describe the exact situation with reference to the actual case? Even if I am not going to use legal means to get the code, should I inform the GPL side of the situation(who I most probably think is unaware of it)? – Bleeding Fingers Sep 22 '13 at 18:58
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    If you want a legal answer, go to a lawyer. We can't provide legal advice here, and if you phrase your question in a legal context, it'll likely be closed. We do not provide legal advice here. If you want a better understanding of the GPL, phrase it as such, but do not expect answers to account for all nuances in the law (since we are software developers, not lawyers). – Thomas Owens Sep 22 '13 at 19:14
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    Regardless of whether you can ask about it on the SE network, the closed-source project seems to be in violation of the GPL library it uses and you should notify at least the GPL author of this possible violation. It is then up to him to take further steps if he thinks that is necessary. – Bart van Ingen Schenau Sep 23 '13 at 18:14
  • @BartvanIngenSchenau thanks for the suggestion, was on the same page but wasn't sure since I'm not completely sure if it is a violation. It involves packaging the library into an .exe and that is why I wanted to ask the question describing the situation. – Bleeding Fingers Sep 23 '13 at 18:29
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Contact the FSF or SFLC for help on GPL enforcement. Or http://gpl-violations.org

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