compatibility and the OSD

Mark Shewmaker mark at
Tue Sep 28 19:28:06 UTC 2004

On Tue, 2004-09-28 at 13:53, Marius Amado Alves wrote:
> On Tue, 2004-09-28 at 13:01, John Cowan wrote:
> >>The current term for the SDC philosophy is "fair source". Eventually I 
> >>will try to rephrase the SDC mottos accordingly.
> > 
> > A fine expression.  Why not change to it immediately?
> Because it is not urgent, we're not marketing yet, the issue needs to be 
> discussed (this is ongoing), the new wording drafted and approved, the 
> SDC is a volunteer effort, and there are other work items.

For clarification, when I suggested earlier in this thread that:

  o  If a person or organization wanted to alter the OSD to accommodate 
     common requests that are very much incompatible with the OSD,
     (but perhaps to the untrained eye look vaguely similar to the OSD),

that perhaps:

  o  OSI could put links on the webpages to that
     group's not-open-source-Definition, and

  o  those of us on this list could refer posters to such organizations,

with the result that:

  o  we would have somewhere to point people interested in such more
     restrictive licenses instead of just leaving them hanging, and

  o  we would not have to continually have these sorts of extended
     "No, we're not altering the OSD like that" discussions as we
     could more quickly refer such people to this other organization,
     (or these other organizations),

I was of course not suggesting that OSI refer people to an organization
that misuses to the "open source" trademark, such as SDC is doing.

(Side note:  Just because OSI decided to abandon their US registered
trademark application (grr) doesn't mean they don't have a common-law
trademark on the term.  IMO, "misuse", and "deceptive use" are apt
descriptions of SDC's use of the term, since the term was coined
specifically for this use, and is widely understood to be defined by
OSI/the OSD.  Incompatible use of the mark is at the very least
intentionally deceptive.)

Mark Shewmaker
mark at

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