Official License Anti-Proliferation policy?

Chuck Swiger chuck at
Tue Apr 12 19:53:29 UTC 2005

Smith, McCoy wrote:
> From: Chuck Swiger [mailto:chuck at] 
[ ...quoting level repaired... ]
>> For example, I think that when a license is depreciated, there ought to
>> be a statement made by the original author (and/or the OSI board if the
>> decision is not agreed-upon by all concerned) notifying people of this,
>> containing a recommendation what projects using that license ought to
>> use.
[ ... ]
> From Intel's perspective, we think deprecation should not affect code
> that was licensed using a particular license before the license was
> deprecated.

Agreed.  OSI's categorization of a license into a tier, or even lack of OSI 
approval, says nothing about the status of code using that license.

[ At the moment, OSI certification no longer even reflects OSD-compliance.
If I submitted a duplicative OSD-compliant license today, it would be 
OSD-compliant by definition, yet would not receive OSI approval per the new 
policy. ]

> Hence the use of the term "deprecation" (as that term is
> used in computer programming: ,
> i.e., obsolete for future uses) rather than "de-certification."  We also
> would not want to give legal advice to people as to any particular
> alternative license they might wish to choose if the Intel Open Source
> License were deprecated.  I'll leave it to OSI as to whether a wizard or
> some other informational matrix might be a helpful aid for people who
> want guidance on choosing a license and don't have the resources of an
> in-house lawyer to give them advice.

Tsk.  What happens when a lawyer *wants* to make a friendly suggestion which 
should not be misconstrued as legal advice?  Can you guys do that without 
jumping through disclaimers as though they were verbal hoops of potential 
implied liability tossed by a litigious ringmaster?

Live large!  Just think of the headlines, "Intel Boldly Recommends the BSD 
license to Existing Users of the Intel Open Source License, in order to help 
OSI's newly announced-- and Controversial-- License Anti-Proliferation Policy".

[ This comment reflects a hypothetical: it would be well not to quote the 
remark above out-of-context, either, please. :-) ]


PS: Besides, even a company with 10 people can afford part-time legal advice-- 
well, at least that's true of companies in Manhattan, anyway.

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