License Counseling

John Cowan cowan at
Tue Aug 28 01:50:17 UTC 2001

Daniel MD scripsit:

> I wish to release a program, and make it open source, everything is 
> modifiable program and documentation, but other developer's have to report 
> the modifications to me (the founding member) by sending me a copy of the 
> modified program or/and application/documentation (this includes a book 
> copy)for free

This is considered to be not Open Source, because it puts too great
a burden on people that create distributions.  They often need to
patch the software a bit to make it work with the rest of the
distro, and it is unreasonable to have them send 100 or 1000
notifications to people who use licenses like this.

In addition, your license burdens people who want to modify the
software for their own use.

Instead, you should *encourage* people to send your their
patches, and you will find that they are mostly happy to do so,
because by working their patches into the official distribution,
they will not have to apply them over and over as you issue new releases.

John Cowan               cowan at
Please leave your values        |       Check your assumptions.  In fact,
   at the front desk.           |          check your assumptions at the door.
     --sign in Paris hotel      |            --Miles Vorkosigan

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