[vlc-devel] update on AppStore situation please
jb at videolan.org
Mon Jan 10 22:53:34 CET 2011
On Mon, Jan 10, 2011 at 08:20:42PM +0100, Pierre Ynard wrote :
> > Copy, redistribution and modification don't seem to be of an issue, as
> > per past discussion and per clarification of the AppStore terms.
> In my understanding, (ii) is still an incompatible restriction on
> copying and usage, although it can be easily circumvented at no cost if
> the app is free. (iii) is an indirected limitation on copying, and is
> still dodgy, but relatively unimportant. Even if they are not practical
> issues, they are still legal ones, and we should be reminded that
> turning a blind eye on possible legal issues, saying that they had no
> real consequences, is what led us in this situation in the first place.
Well, I disagree here, since the "valid end user agreement" should
overrun the specific part. But I have to say that my e-mail wasn't
clear, since what I meant is section "LICENSE OF MAC APP STORE AND APP
> > The part that is interesting has changed a bit:
> > `You shall use Products in compliance with the applicable usage
> > rules established by Apple and its principals (“Usage Rules”),
> > and that any other use of the Products may constitute a copyright
> > infringement.`
> > Now, what is unclear:
> > - should the first "may" be considered as a possibility or a fact?
> > Seeing the French translation, I would say "a possibility".
> I didn't get your point at first, but now I do. I acknowledge your
Thanks. I hate legalese :D
> That section refers to "security technology" (aka DRM if I follow) :
> Is this the famous Apple's DRMs? Who puts that security technology in
> there? VideoLAN publishes code for an iOS port of VLC, but I don't know
> what happens next with the build/packaging process. So to answer your
> question, given the context, it could mean that breaking the DRMs would
> be an infringement on whomever wrote them. As for other infringements,
> the later section "LICENSE OF MAC APP STORE AND APP STORE PRODUCTS" uses
> language like "Apple is not a party to the license between you and the
> Application Provider with respect to that Third-Party Product", which
> suggests that the only copyright there is to infringe is the product's
> editor. And then we know that for a GPL'd VLC, commercial use and so on
> is no infringement, so everything would be fine.
It is my understanding that free apps have no DRM.
> > - What to understand from the "may" of the Usage Rules?
> > French says: "you are allowed to download and synchronise..."
> That's not where the issue is.
Then where is it?
> > notably seeing that Apple markets the iDevices as commercial tools
> > (notably with iWork suite),
> Makes sense.
> > notably seeing that Apple people have confirmed that the "(iv) You shall
> > be able to store App Store Products on five iTunes-authorized devices at
> > any time." sentence was to be understood to be a minimum and not a
> > maximum and that the French translation makes it even clearer.
> I haven't seen any such explanation from Apple, but (iv) was removed
True... Is it legal in Europe to have ToS changing that often?
> Rémi claimed a GPL infringement. Apple eventually removed VLC from the
> AppStore, and it sure sounds like an acknowledgement that there was an
No, they removed VLC from the AppStore saying that "the matter was not
resolved amically by the parties quickly enough". They refuse to
consider themselves as a party.
> But what prevents us from petitioning Apple to clarify
> that this reading of the *new* version of the AppStore terms, which
> would be compatible with the GPL, is the right reading, and would allow
> putting back VLC on the AppStore? What would happen if, based on this,
> we submitted VLC to the AppStore again? What do you think, Rémi?
Sure, it could be a way.
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