Posted by: Anonymous Coward
on April 15, 2002 02:40 PM
It doesn't MATTER if they gave all their changes back. They are distributing binaries and they have the direct obligation to make the sources to those binaries available. Their obligation is not discharged because someone else (might) be doing what they are required to do under the GPL. As a user/developer, I wouldn't want it any other way. What if I wanted to make some change to their software? As it is, I have no way to know which version of the source code someone else is distributing matches the binary that they gave me. In fact, it's likely that the source code that matches that binary might never become available to me. Chances are their changes will be merged with other changes in some future public release which will make it impossible for me to ever re-create their binaries from source. Oh and it doesn't even matter if they didn't make any changes to the program in question. They are STILL obligated to make the sources available. The act of distributing a binary makes one obligated to distribute source, not the act of modifying source code.