binary restrictions?

Karsten M. Self kmself at
Wed Oct 3 02:34:00 UTC 2001

on Tue, Oct 02, 2001 at 06:04:09PM -0400, Ned Lilly (ned at wrote:
> Hello all,
> Apologies if this question has been covered before.  I haven't been
> on this list for many months.
> Is anyone aware of a license which permits source access and
> modifications, patch contributions, but restricts the right to
> distribute compiled binaries to the sponsoring organization?

This may violate OSD condition 1, in conjunction with condition 3.

The first condition requires free redistribution.  The third requires
modifications and derived works.  Condition 2 states that the preferred
form of a work is that in which it would be modified, implying source
code.  It's not clear whether or not condition 1 implies that all
modifictions and derived works must be freely distributable, but I'd say
you're skating rather close to the line, and probably on the wrong side,
with your proposal.

That's my lay legal read.

From a strategic standpoint, I suspect the model is suicide.

> So if I started project Foo, anyone could download from, use
> Foo in their business, modify the code at will, and submit patches (if
> desired) for consideration by Foo leaders.  Anyone could redistribute
> the "official" source (but *not* modified source).  
This expressly violates condition 3.

> But only Foo, Inc.  could redistribute binaries.
> Have I missed something obvious?


IANAL, TINLA, !OSI member.


Karsten M. Self <kmself at>
 What part of "Gestalt" don't you understand?              Home of the brave                    Land of the free
   Free Dmitry! Boycott Adobe! Repeal the DMCA!
Geek for Hire            
-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: not available
Type: application/pgp-signature
Size: 232 bytes
Desc: not available
URL: <>

More information about the License-discuss mailing list