Wonka Public Licence

Karsten M. Self kmself at ix.netcom.com
Fri Nov 16 00:33:11 UTC 2001

on Thu, Nov 15, 2001 at 10:39:02AM +0100, Chris Gray (chris.gray at acunia.com) wrote:
> Russell Nelson wrote:
> > Chris Gray writes:
> >  > Dear all,
> >  >
> >  > I was disappointed to see that our licence
> >  > (URL:http://wonka.acunia.com/wonkapl.html) seems not to have made
> >  > it onto the agenda of last Wednesday's meeting.  Since the WPL is
> >  > now really just revised-BSD with a polite request tacked onto the
> >  > end (we removed an Apache-style clause because it conflicted with
> >  > the GPL), I propose that we self-certify, so to speak: that is, in
> >  > our communications we (ACUNIA) simply state that our licence is
> >  > fully compliant with the OSD, just as we assert that it is
> >  > GPL-compatible.  Of course an OSI-certified gong would still be
> >  > very welcome.
> >
> > If the request is no legal meaning, why do you need your license
> > approved?
> Arguably we don't "need" it any more: like I said, we can "self-certify".
> Being able to refer to a specific decision or an official list is nice-to-have,
> but not mission-critical.
> Suppose I replace the current text at http://wonka.acunia.com by the following:
>     An Open-Source VM
>     Wonka is available under a genuine Open Source license conceived
>     with the needs of embedded system developers in mind: the conditions
>     it imposes are the same as the well-known BSD licence
>     [http://www.opensource.org/licenses/bsd-license.html].  You don't
>     have to make your entire business open-source in order to use Wonka,
>     nor do we insist you join a ``community process'' .
>     See the licensing page for details.
> I think this is legal, honest, and decent, and says what we want to say:
> and includes a desirable element of joint marketing (we implicitly
> identify ourselves with the aims of OSI, inflating your citation index
> and allowing us to bathe in your warmth).

Looks to me what you're trying to do is create a "rebranded" BSD

I'm fine with this.

There will likely be an approval stage involved, as there is a language
change from the BSD license.  However, the terms as understood would be
a change of the name of the license, a reference to the copyright
holder, and appropriate references to trademarks.  

This is an established MO, and the approval process should be relatively
short and sweet.  I'm still egging the OSI on to streamline this process
more by providing a specific template or set of guidelines that
more-or-less guarantees (or, for the lawyers, "expediates processing
with a strong likelihood of success") accelerated processing. 

> > If the request indeed has legal import, what problem is it solving?
> Both the Apache-style trademark clause and the Mach-style request were
> added as sweeteners, to solve the problem of "how do we persuade the
> Project Approval Comittee and the Board of Directors to give away many
> man-years worth of valuable intellectual property?".  When the exact
> nature of the conflict with the GPL was explained to me, I was able to
> justify a request to delete the Apache clause.  At the moment I don't
> think I have a convincing argument for removing sweetener no. 2.  If
> an opportunity arises to quietly drop it then I will.


> > In any case, if you resubmit it according to the new submission
> > instructions, I'll get it on the agenda if I have any spare time
> > after dealing with getting my mother home from the hospital.
> If no one on this list objects to the self-certification solution then
> I don't think we need to burden either you or the board with this.

I'll object, though the matter is largely pro forma, not substantive.

We do want to make sure that the license *is* what it claims to be, and
doesn't merely claim it.  However, approving small, stnadardized,
deviations from a small, simple, well understood license greatly
simplifies this process.

I think it would be fair to say that a license under the terms I
describe above is:

  - Likely to be found conformant with the OSI-OSD and approved by the
    OSI board.

  - Follows a well-established procedure for rebranding an existing,
    widely used, well understood, and broadly accepted OSI approved
    license, the BSD License. 

  - Still provisional -- all such statements are contingent on the final
    decision of the OSI board.


Karsten M. Self <kmself at ix.netcom.com>       http://kmself.home.netcom.com/
 What part of "Gestalt" don't you understand?             Home of the brave
  http://gestalt-system.sourceforge.net/                   Land of the free
   Free Dmitry! Boycott Adobe! Repeal the DMCA! http://www.freesklyarov.org
Geek for Hire                     http://kmself.home.netcom.com/resume.html
-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: not available
Type: application/pgp-signature
Size: 232 bytes
Desc: not available
URL: <http://lists.opensource.org/pipermail/license-discuss_lists.opensource.org/attachments/20011115/6ac30256/attachment.sig>

More information about the License-discuss mailing list