Some devices are designed to deny users access to install or run modified versions
of the software inside them, although the manufacturer can do so. This is
fundamentally incompatible with the aim of protecting users' freedom to change
the software. The systematic pattern of such abuse occurs in the area of products
for individuals to use, which is precisely where it is most unacceptable.
Therefore, we have designed this version of the GPL to prohibit the practice for
those products. If such problems arise substantially in other domains, we stand
ready to extend this provision to those domains in future versions of the GPL, as
needed to protect the freedom of users.
Finally, every program is threatened constantly by software patents. States
should not allow patents to restrict development and use of software on general-
purpose computers, but in those that do, we wish to avoid the special danger that
patents applied to a free program could make it effectively proprietary. To
prevent this, the GPL assures that patents cannot be used to render the program
The precise terms and conditions for copying, distribution and modification
TERMS AND CONDITIONS
"This License" refers to version 3 of the GNU General Public License.
"Copyright" also means copyright-like laws that apply to other kinds of works,
such as semiconductor masks.
"The Program" refers to any copyrightable work licensed under this License. Each
licensee is addressed as "you". "Licensees" and "recipients" may be individuals or
To "modify" a work means to copy from or adapt all or part of the work in a
fashion requiring copyright permission, other than the making of an exact copy.
The resulting work is called a "modified version" of the earlier work or a work
"based on" the earlier work.
A "covered work" means either the unmodified Program or a work based on the
To "propagate" a work means to do anything with it that, without permission,
would make you directly or secondarily liable for infringement under applicable
copyright law, except executing it on a computer or modifying a private copy.
Propagation includes copying, distribution (with or without modification), making
available to the public, and in some countries other activities as well.