MrNet has a non compliant opensource license

Rui Miguel Seabra rms at
Mon Oct 29 11:47:48 UTC 2001


The Mr.Net Company has changed the license to a more suitable definition:

3. The source code
a) This Software is provided with the original source code.
b) Original source code provided by Mr Net may be altered for personal use only.
c) Distribution of modified Software is proibithed.

They have also admitted (after some discussion on the news site gildot) that
they are not using an opensource license.

All seems well now.

Thanks for the input, rms

ps: I contacted the responsible individual on the news site, since he was
actively participating in it.
He still seems to believe that it is an opensource license, because the
source is there. However, the oficial positions seems to be that it is not
an opensource license.

On Sun, Oct 28, 2001 at 06:10:44PM -0800, Karsten M. Self wrote:
> Date: Sun, 28 Oct 2001 18:10:44 -0800
> From: "Karsten M. Self" <kmself at>
> To: info at
> Cc: License-Discuss list <license-discuss at>
> Subject: Re: MrNet has a non compliant opensource license
> on Sun, Oct 28, 2001 at 09:33:01AM +0000, Rui Miguel Seabra (rms at wrote:
> > Hello,
> > 
> > A portuguese company, MrNet, is advertising an "opensource" product,
> > and flags a certain license [ ] as
> > opensource.
> > 
> > A quick inspection reveals that the first 8 of the 9 points of the
> > open source definition are almost completely disregarded, and the last
> > one is simply addressed by omission.
> > 
> > I have posted in a public forum in portuguese my problems with that
> > misleading license, but I think it should be addressed by someone from
> > the opensource initiative as well.
> > 
> > In my point of view, this license is intentionally misleading to lead
> > the most gullible into thinking they're using opensource software.
> > 
> > What can be done more to this effect?
> > 
> > Best wishes, 
> > 
> > rms
> To whom it may concern:
> I'm writing as a member of the general public regarding the licensing
> agreement apparently covering your product MrNet, found at
> As described above, the agreement refers to the software covered as
> "Open Source".  While a formal certification of this phrase for US
> trademark does not exist, it is similar to the service mark OSI Open
> Source Certified Software®, as described at
> Moreover, there is a general understanding in the technical community
> that "Open Source" describes licensing terms corresponding to the Open
> Source Definition or the Free Software Foundation's "Free Software"
> definition (
> While there is not legal obligation to stop using the term "Open Source"
> to describe your software, it should be made clear that the term as
> you're describing it has nothing to do with the OSD Open Source
> Definition.  Confusion, or the appearance of distorting the true facts
> of your licensing terms, would likely reflect poorly on your
> organization.
> I've copied this note to the OSI's license-discuss mailing list where
> the situation was first brought to my attention, should you care to
> follow up on the matter.
> I am not a lawyer, I don't represent any particular interest in this
> matter.  This email is strictly informational.
> Peace.
> -- 
> 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           

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