License Approval Process

jcmason at jcmason at
Wed Feb 16 00:35:57 UTC 2000

On Tue, 15 Feb 2000, Michael Stutz wrote:

> Richard Brice wrote:
> > You can't use source code licensed with License X with source code
> > licensed with License Z (ok, that's a generalization but I don't
> > think it is too far off the mark).
> Is it *possible* for a license to be compatible with another? Offhand
> I can think of just two possibilities for the GPL: the LGPL, and code
> that has no license and is in the public domain.

It's certainly possible.  The GPL is particularly restrictive in this

What I would like to see as a variation of the GPL is one which allows
modifications to be placed under any certified Open Source license (this
is assuming a good certification process, which is being called into
question).  I think this would make a good license to allow your code to
be used with the maximum amount of open source software, but still
disallow closed source software.  (This would be a middle ground between
the GPL and the LGPL.)

> Might dual-licensing apply for some of the organizations who are
> toying with writing a GPL clone -- as copyright holder, couldn't they
> release their code under both the GPL (or whatever license they
> chose), and also license the program under some other terms as needed?

One problem with this is that a lot of organizations wish to specifically
avoid the GPL, since there's some concern that it isn't clear enough to
stand up in court.  For instance, it uses many terms without defining
them, and it's often not clear just want counts as a modification or
derivative work. 

So dual-licensing with the GPL seems kind of pointless to me - might as
well just release your code under the GPL in the first place.


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