Discuss: BSD Protection License

Forrest J. Cavalier III mibsoft at mibsoftware.com
Tue Mar 12 17:43:41 UTC 2002

>   I didn't define "Definitions", either. <ducks>
>   I have no legal training, 

No legal training required for discussion here.  And 
according to Larry, if you have legal training, there
is some discussion you should not be doing here.  :-)

> but I thought it would be clear that
> "Modification and redistribution under open license" and "... under
> closed license" were simply section headings.

Hmmm.  Not clear to me.  They are worded as selection criteria,
in which case the selector must know the definitions.

(Someone else also pointed out that the election could be
made more clear.  I still think it should just be a disjointed

Since Clause 3a and 4a are identical.  3b and 4b are similar,
Did you consider rewriting so that 3a and 3b/4b are always
required, and then have a "must do one of the following"

(BTW, 4b is kind of confusing.  The "full details" of a modification
ARE the modification.  Did you mean "full description"?)

>    Err, which wording did you want to see adjusted?

The GPL 2(b) is in context.  The GPL is very carefully
worded and concise which indicates to me that the GPL
paragraphs after 2(c) are required in the license itself
to influence the interpretation of the clauses in that

The BSDPL does not have the same explanatory text, and 4c
is in a slightly different context than GPL 2c.

As I said, I understand from the preamble what you meant.
But the preamble is not the license.  The unintended
interpretation of 4c will taint works reasonably
considered independent.

Here's a test.  If I distribute source for software under
BSDPL terms that consists of two source files, one BSDPL,
and one that was originally under the MIT license.  Can
the recipient distribute the works separately, and use
the MIT license for the second?  The GPL is clear and
allows it.  The BSDPL is not clear.

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