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感謝您對「自由軟體鑄造場」的支持與愛護,十多年來「自由軟體鑄造場」受中央研究院支持,並在資訊科學研究所以及資訊科技創新研究中心執行,現已完成階段性的任務。 原網站預計持續維運至 2021年底,網站內容基本上不會再更動。本網站由 Denny Huang 備份封存。
也紀念我們永遠的朋友 李士傑先生(Shih-Chieh Ilya Li)。
Glossary Modification

Open Source Software license

We provide Open Source Software license and legal materials via this page.



The Copyright Law grants copyright holders the right to forbid others modifying their works. Because of this, the copyright holder’s consent must be obtained before a work can be translated, instrumentalized, rewritten, shot as film or be modified into another work. Modification in terms of computer programming belongs to the above category of modifying a work. When a programmer modifies other people’s program, he or she can specify that the modification is combined into the original work, thus making the modified work a derivative work (see “derivative work”). If such is the case, the programmer needs the copyright holder’s consent for both the modification and the distribution. On the other hand, the programmer can make the modifications an independent “patch” that does not include any expression of the source code of the original work. The patch then becomes an original work, the distribution of which requires therefore no consent from the copyright holder of the original program. This is because if the patch file does not include the source code of the original program, it can be seen as an independent work, rather than as the derivate work of the original work. In most free software licenses, the copyright holder usually grants the licensee the right of modifying the program and distributing the modified program. But if the terms do not specify such terms, the licensee will only be able to distribute the modified form as a patch and will not be able to include the source code of the original work in the patch. This is because, according to the Copyright Law, if the license does not specify a right to be granted, such right should be seen as not granted by the copyright holder. Please also note that the programmer does not need the consent from the copyright holder when he or she distributes the patch. On the other hand, when a user installs the patch, the action equals to the modification of the original work. The user, therefore, has to take notice if he or she is granted the right by the copyright holder to perform such modification.

Category: Glossary