Academic Free License questions

John Cowan jcowan at
Thu Nov 21 22:59:22 UTC 2002

Lawrence E. Rosen scripsit:

> There is no reason I'm aware of why code licensed under the AFL can't be
> incorporated into GPL-licensed works.  

Clause 6 of the GPL says:

	Each time you redistribute the Program (or any work based on the
	Program), the recipient automatically receives a license from
	the original licensor to copy, distribute or modify the Program
	subject to these terms and conditions. You may not impose any
	further restrictions on the recipients' exercise of the rights
	granted herein.

But if such a work is also derived from AFL-licensed code, it *does*
impose further restrictions: in particular, someone who is suing for
patent infringement doesn't get to do the copyright-protected things
with the program.  So the AFL and GPL are incompatible.

In RMS's writeup on the IBMPL, he implies that patent poison pills are
not Bad Things, but they are incompatible.

Looks like my library will have to be dual-licensed AFL+GPL.  Annoying.

> I looked at and found nothing whatsoever about the AFL.
> What have I missed?
and scroll down a bit if necessary.

One art / There is                      John Cowan <jcowan at>
No less / No more             
All things / To do            
With sparks / Galore                     -- Douglas Hofstadter
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