License Approval Process

Geoff Eldridge geldridg at
Wed Feb 16 05:49:03 UTC 2000

On Tue, 15 Feb 2000, Alex Nicolaou wrote:

> My conclusion: skip the certification. Write your code. If people want
> it, they'll read your license after they're using it and send you
> complaints. Spend the time on the important part ... the software.

We in the Eiffel community have struck a problem with our `open source'
licence (note it has not been through OSI certification) called the Eiffel
Forum Freeware Licence (EFFL):

under which the bulk of `open source' Eiffel software is released. See the
Eiffel Forum Archive:

The EFFL was created to workaround a problem with the LGPL which as the
licence page above states:

   Sometimes you will see software released under the Gnu Library GPL. 
   This license is designed to be less restrictive than the Gnu GPL. 
   However, its wording is based on the compilation and linkage model
   used for C, and I cannot see how it can be applied to Eiffel

We have now struck a problem with sourceForge who are keen to see the EFFL
certified through the OSI processes, which are now being discussed on this
list. What has happened with sourceForge is they ultimately accept the
library into the sourceForge facilities after some negotiating with the
library maintainer. Obviously it would be better for everyone if we could
get the EFFL OSI certified, but based on the discussion on this list it
seems like the OSI has stalled.

Hopefully, we will be putting our EFFL through the processes as described
on this page:

Just one situation where an alternative licence to the main stream is
required. BTW, the EFFL was drafted in early 1998 around the time of the
popularising of the term open source. The EFFL has been incredibly
successful in motivating Eiffel library writers to release their code so
that others can use their efforts and at the same time ensure that
improvements are fedback into the library.

Geoff Eldridge

-- geldridg at

More information about the License-discuss mailing list