License Approval Process

David Johnson arandir at
Wed Feb 16 03:40:51 UTC 2000

On Tue, 15 Feb 2000, John Cowan wrote:
> The "new BSD" and the equivalent MIT license are compatible with the
> GPL; the "old BSD" license with the advertising requirement is not.
> In general, a license is compatible with the GPL if it imposes the
> same, or fewer, restrictions than the GPL.

To be specific, I think you mean fewer of the *same* restrictions than the GPL.
If a license had absolutely no restrictions except for an advertisment clause,
most would not consider it compatible, even though it was less restrictive

However, "compatibility" with the GPL is still being debated in some quarters.
Although RMS considers the BSD and MIT licenses to be compatible, some
legalists question this. And then there are some BSD and MIT adherents who
claim that their licenses do not allow relicensing their original code under
the GPL.

Although everyone agrees on the broad points of the GPL, there are a thousand
interpretations of its finer points.


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