From: Philippe Verdy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Tue Sep 18 2007 - 03:31:05 CDT
Hans Aberg wrote...
> The copyright holder has the distribution rights, but not the rights
> of the indivudal rights, as long as there is no clash.
Hmmmm... a licence is not equivalent to a commercial contract, because its
document is not signed by the recipient. It's a form of unilateral contract
from the licensor to the licencee.
It is said to be still a valid contract only because it grants rights
against balanced obligations.
One way to enhance the balancing of clauses andits validity as a contract is
to link it with a commercial transaction, where both rights and obligatiosn
are exchanged between the buyer-licensee and the seller-licensor, but
effectively there's a difficulty with the fact that the buyer is not
necessarily the licensee that is granted rights to use, and the seller is
not necessarily the licensor (unless the seller is a sub-licensor, meaning
that it has exclusive rights for the distribution in his area or domain of
Another difficulty is that the signed agreement is not collected back by the
licensor that has then difficulty to prove that it was effectively accepted
by the licensee. And another problem is that the buyer is most often not
given a chance to review the license before the purchase, making the
requirements in that licence difficult to apply (at lest for EULAs within
boxes, or with online purchases for downloaded softwares: you'll see the
EULA only when installing it, after the purchase, meaning that the act of
licensing is decoupled from the act of commercial transaction. So it becomes
difficult to prove that both parties accepted the terms of the contract
before using the subject of the license, so that they both become equally
Note that some legislation make unbalanced contracts void, as if it was
never signed and had never existed. For these reasons, licenses are very
weak kinds of contracts, unless its content is made publicly reviewable
before the purchase.
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