Free Software Licensing Strategy -- Some guidelines

Ben Tilly ben_tilly at
Wed Jan 17 22:16:24 UTC 2001

Tom Hull <thull at> wrote:
>kmself at wrote:
> >
> > 1. Understand the standard licensing models
> > -------------------------------------------
> > The Artistic License is notable for its use with the Perl programming
> > language, however, it's a somewhat eclectic and ambiguous document.
>My take is that the Artistic License is mostly an argument with GPL over
>what constitutes a derived work: in particular, it disclaims embedding
>(like the Guile license) and command extensions (regardless of how they
>are implemented), and it does so in ways that are very specific to Perl.
>(That is, one has to rewrite the license to apply it to anything else.)

My understanding is that the Artistic License is a feel-good
document which is legal Swiss cheese.  It certainly does not
achieve its stated aim, is probably not legally enforcable,
if it were it would be trivial to subvert, and there are
multiple versions out there.  (Having had the wording of the
version in Perl modified several times without getting the
explicit permission of all copyright holders makes its status

I don't think that it should be generally used.

IANAL and this is not legal advice.

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