RealNetworks' RTSP Proxy License
Rod Dixon, J.D., LL.M.
rod at cyberspaces.org
Sun Sep 9 22:01:03 UTC 2001
Perhaps, I was a little harsh and not succinct. I was thinking of a certain
type of open source license (licenses used with open source projects)
without explicitly stating so, which, in my opinion, are the only licenses
that are related to the issue of enforceability (who is going to complain
about the MIT license?).
The MIT license is a perfect example of a different type of license. Aside
from the warranty disclaimer and the copyright notice requirement, the MIT
license, and perhaps, some of its various forms (e.g., BSD, X.org) are
nothing more than a non-exclusive grant of copyright. I consider licenses
like the MIT license to be at the bottom of the open source barrel because
they are ostensibly end-user licenses, at best. They are not as protective
of freedoms as the GNU GPL (no copyleft), they say nothing about source
code (how to you get access?), and they cannot be used for an open source
project (without significant modification). These difficiencies are related
to the issues regarding the validity of an open source license that we were
discussing. Having said that, I agree that the MIT License is a fine
end-user software distribution license.
Copyright (c) <year> <copyright holders>
Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy
of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), to
deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the
rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or
sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the Software is
furnished to do so, subject to the following conditions:
The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in
all copies or substantial portions of the Software.
THE SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED "AS IS", WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EXPRESS OR
IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO THE WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY,
FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND NONINFRINGEMENT. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE
AUTHORS OR COPYRIGHT HOLDERS BE LIABLE FOR ANY CLAIM, DAMAGES OR OTHER
LIABILITY, WHETHER IN AN ACTION OF CONTRACT, TORT OR OTHERWISE, ARISING
FROM, OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE SOFTWARE OR THE USE OR OTHER DEALINGS
IN THE SOFTWARE."
Visiting Assistant Professor of Law
Rutgers University Law School - Camden
rod at cyberspaces.org
> -----Original Message-----
> From: John Cowan [mailto:cowan at mercury.ccil.org]
> Sent: Sunday, September 09, 2001 11:08 AM
> To: Rod Dixon, J.D., LL.M.
> Cc: Rick Moen; license-discuss at opensource.org
> Subject: Re: RealNetworks' RTSP Proxy License
> Rod Dixon, J.D., LL.M. scripsit:
> > But, do note that the more your
> > license terms resemble nothing more than a non-exclusive grant
> of copyright
> > to the end-user, the more likely your "open source" license should be
> > considered a run-of-the-mill copyright license that is governed by the
> > Copyright Act, preemptively; if so, your license is probably not an open
> > source license.
> Your last clause confuses me. The MIT license is very close to being
> "nothing more than a non-exclusive grant of copyright to the end-user",
> and it is undoubtedly open source.
> John Cowan http://www.ccil.org/~cowan
> cowan at ccil.org
> 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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