Deimos X11 bindings license question

Mike Parker via Digitalmars-d digitalmars-d at
Sun Sep 3 09:51:53 PDT 2017

On Sunday, 3 September 2017 at 16:10:11 UTC, Gary Willoughby 
> Hi,
> A few years ago I forked the Deimos X11 bindings[1] repo to add 
> dub support. Since then my repo[2] has received bug fixes and 
> as such it's being used in many projects. (Also, in the 
> following years dub support was added to the Deimos repo too.) 
> I had a question from a developer as to the license of the code 
> in my repo. I used the LGPL because the original used it.
> My question, is there a legal way to change the current license 
> to Boost or MIT or something like? Because this particular 
> developer wanted to use it in a project where LGPL was 
> incompatible.
> [1]:
> [2]:

When I first created the DerelictSDL bindings, the SDL library 
was LGPL (though it's since switched to MIT). I contacted Sam 
Lantinga (the creator of SDL) to get his take on it. He told me 
that his understanding was that an API binding is not a 
derivative work and therefore can have a separate license. I got 
the same answer from others. None of these folks were, or are, 
lawyers, but they all work for companies that have to be aware of 
such issues. So I felt as safe as I could be sans legal advice in 
licensing all of the Derelict packages under Boost.

That said, I don't know if the Oracle v. Google case and its 
precedent that APIs are copyrightable impact this common 
understanding. After all, it was commonly understood prior to 
that case that that copyright applies to implementations, not 
interfaces. Now that the court has established the opposite, does 
the same hold true for licensing? I don't know of any legal cases 
that have decided either way.

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