discuss: EPD CORE OPEN SOURCE LICENSE - Version 0.1

David Johnson david at usermode.org
Fri Feb 14 05:47:01 UTC 2003

On Thursday 13 February 2003 09:06 pm, Bill Moran wrote:
> [ Please discuss this license.  -russ ]
> I have attached a license that we are proposing to be OSI compliant.
> The license is also posted here:
> http://www.potentialtech.com/epdlicense.php

First of all, it would be best if you can craft this license as a 
"template", so that someone else may use it without having to resubmit 
it for approval when merely changing the company and product name.

> and has been submitted to the Open
> Software Initiative (OSI) for approval.

No need for this. If the license gets approved, you'll have to remove 
it, then undergo approval process all over again :-(

> Usage of the software indicates acceptance of the terms of this
> license. If you do not or can not agree to the terms of this license,
> you may not use the software

Ouch! All Open Source Software, in my opinion, must give the user the 
right to use the software without having to agree to anything. I 
realize you're just trying to protect yourself, but there are better 
mechanisms for this. For example, you *cannot* be sure that everyone 
has indeed read the license, since users may have obtained it through 
parties other than yourself. In addition, my disagreement with how I 
may or may not modify the source should have no bearing on my usage of 
the software.

Search through the list archives, and you'll find more discussion on 
this issue, and some possible alternate mechanisms.

> The modifications are submitted to the Copyright holder for inclusion
> in the main development tree and all intellectual rights are
> surrendered to the Copyright holder under the condition that  the
> Copyright holder will publish the modifications under this License.

You are placing a potentially onerous restriction upon yourself. It 
sounds like if someone submits modifications and assigns copyrights to 
you, then you are obligated to publish them. That may not be what you 
mean, but that's how it sounds to me.

> If you contribute your modifications as described above, you warrant 
> that you have the authority to transfer ownership of the modifications
> and that they are your work and do not infringe on the  intellectual
> property rights of others and are not encumbered in any way.

I'm leery about making the recipient warrant anything, especially since 
you are offering no warranty of any kind in return.


In the large, this license seems rather close to the QPL. Have you 
examined that license for suitability?

David Johnson
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