Review of SpeechWorks Public license

John Cowan jcowan at
Thu Apr 5 19:15:02 UTC 2001

Derek Seabury wrote:

>     I still haven't heard anything a few months after submitting the following
> license to the approval list, so I thought I'd try to get a head start and
> post to the discussion list to see if anyone had feedback.

OSI actions depend on overworked volunteers, so slowness should be expected.

> 1)    "All rights reserved" is stricken.

This is not strictly speaking part of the *license*, but of the *copyright
notice*.  It used to be very important to say that (whether you actually
then give away most of the rights or not) in non-Berne countries, but now
that there are essentially no non-Berne countries (except those that don't
recognize international copyright at all), it makes no difference.

No harm, no foul.
> 2) SPL adds the following condition -
>     Products derived from the software may not be called "SpeechWorks", nor
> may "SpeechWorks" appear in their name, without prior written permission of
> SWI.

The Artistic License has equivalent provisions, as does the NPL.  I can't
see this as a problem.  It might be wise to file for a trademark on

> 3)    In the SPL we suggest people read the README.html for the package

Suggestions are always fine.
> 4) The SPL replaces "WARRANTIES" with "WARRANTIES AND CONDITIONS" in two
> places.
> 5) The SPL adds "TITLE" and "NON-INFRINGEMENT" to the list of explicitly
> disclaimed warranties.

Editorial changes, should be no problem.
Disclaimer:  IANAOSIBoardMember.

There is / one art             || John Cowan <jcowan at>
no more / no less              ||
to do / all things             ||
with art- / lessness           \\ -- Piet Hein

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