compatibility and the OSD

Rick Moen rick at
Fri Sep 24 01:35:53 UTC 2004

Quoting Chris F Clark (cfc at

> However, his desire is valid.  Especially, if he might be in the
> position to contribute a substantial block of code as open source. as
> an author of such substantial block of code, he might be legitimately
> concerned that someone (say from a competing company) might desire to
> leverage that block into an incompatible and competing product that
> might not be open source.

The most obvious way to prevent that is to use a copyleft licence, and 
accept for inclusion in one's code repository third-party contributions 
only if accompanied by copyright assignment.  Then, your competitors
cannot lawfully create competing proprietary forks of your codebase (let
alone incompatible ones), whereas you can.

People who don't like copyleft (and prefer simple permissive licences) 
don't have this remedy open to them, but also lack the concern in

> I think it is worthy of consideration as to whether a license *can* be
> crafted that meets those needs and still be OSD compliant.

Solved prolem.  Next?  ;->

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