Help on Dual-Licensing Strategy
M. Drew Streib
dtype at dtype.org
Mon Sep 10 17:53:29 UTC 2001
On Sun, Sep 09, 2001 at 08:44:49PM +0100, rghoo wrote:
> Does this make sense, or am I missing something? Is dual-licensing a
> dangerous game or is it a good compromise, allowing both commercial
> exploitation for those that are prepared to pay for it and free use of the
> software for those that don't want to pay.
> Has anyone seen this approach elsewhere?
This isn't always referred to as 'dual licensing'. As the sole copyright
holder on the work, releasing the work under the GPL/LGPL does _not_
prohibit you from licensing it to other parties under different terms.
After all, it is your work, and you can do what you want with it.
Dual licensing typically refers to licensing under more than one public
license of some sort, usually for license compatibility reasons, which
doesn't sound like your intent here.
Do be careful, however, when you begin to receive contributions to this
code. If you accept code from third parties who retain the copyright
on that code (be it GPL/LGPL/etc), you will not have the right to turn
around and relicense that code under proprietary terms. There are ways
around this, such as requiring any contributed code to have the copyright
assigned to you, or at least granting you rights to relicense the code,
but these are not always liked by the free/oss software communities.
As for the specifics of an Open Source license for release, each come
with their own advantages and disadvantages. That decision is between
you and your lawyers.
M. Drew Streib <dtype at dtype.org> | http://dtype.org/
FSG <dtype at freestandards.org> | Linux International <dtype at li.org>
freedb <dtype at freedb.org> | SourceForge <dtype at sourceforge.net>
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