[Rd] Copyright on src/nmath/qnorm.c

Peter Dalgaard P.Dalgaard at biostat.ku.dk
Thu Feb 11 14:49:13 CET 2010

David Heffernan wrote:
> At the top of src/nmath/qnorm.c it is stated:
>  *  Copyright (C) 1998       Ross Ihaka
>  *  Copyright (C) 2000--2005 The R Development Core Team
>  *  based on AS 111 (C) 1977 Royal Statistical Society
>  *  and   on AS 241 (C) 1988 Royal Statistical Society
> The routine is in fact an f2c'd version of AS241 from StatLib:
> http://lib.stat.cmu.edu/apstat/241 and http://lib.stat.cmu.edu/apstat/
> It seems odd to me that this is re-licensed under GPL and copyright asserted to
> be held by R Development Core Team.  I expect that if I looked further I could
> find plenty of other routines with a similar heritage.  

(a) We sought permission from the RSS to use the Applied Statistics
algorithms in R, and GPL was mentioned in the discussions. There is a
list of such algorithms in doc/COPYRIGHTS.

(b) Multiple copyright statements refer to _changes_ to code (RSS does
not automatically obtain copyright for our modifications, including the
f2c translation), and as such, the headers are accurate.

Peter D.

> The StatLib page states, "The Royal Statistical Society holds the copyright to
> these routines, but has given its permission for their distribution provided
> that no fee is charged."
> Why does R Development Core Team claim copyright for what appears to be work
> copyright RSS?  You really ought to ascribe the copyright to RSS.
> I don't think that the GPL is compatible with the StatLib license since the GPL
> does not forbid charging a fee for distribution.
> I guess you could come to some agreement with the RSS and I'm sure they would be
> happy to help.
> I think that it is important to be very precise on matters of licensing which is
> why I raise the point.
> David Heffernan.
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   O__  ---- Peter Dalgaard             Øster Farimagsgade 5, Entr.B
  c/ /'_ --- Dept. of Biostatistics     PO Box 2099, 1014 Cph. K
 (*) \(*) -- University of Copenhagen   Denmark      Ph:  (+45) 35327918
~~~~~~~~~~ - (p.dalgaard at biostat.ku.dk)              FAX: (+45) 35327907

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