OSI's war on corporate licenses

Chuck Swiger chuck at codefab.com
Tue Apr 12 22:37:41 UTC 2005

Mike Milinkovich wrote:
> Sorry, I did not mean to imply that *you* said that the BSD was
> asymmetrical. Only that you and Chuck seemed to attach different meanings to
> the term.

Bruce says he doesn't think the BSD license is asymmetrical.
[ I don't think the BSD license is asymmetrical either. ]

The statements made on the OSI website and here have suggested the OSI board 
sees something wrong with the MPL and similar licenses, for the reasons they 
wrote.  I criticise the very notion of starting from the premise that there is 
something wrong with the MPL, or that it constitutes a "worthy experiment that 
has failed".

It seems to me that the mindset behind these changes is one which sees 
something wrong with people using open source software in proprietary ways, or 
using proprietary software together with open source software (ie, linking nv 
or ATI drivers into a Linux kernel, or Apple being able to ship Python with 
GNU readline support, or use gnutar and dselect or apt for package management 
rather than pax).

Is the GPLv3 going to help people-- meaning developers, end-users, and 
proprietary companies-- use Open Source together in such cases more easily 
compared with the existing GPLv2...?

[ ...you've provided a good summation of the thread... ]
> So, can someone confirm whether this is really what is meant by the License
> Proliferation document? Is the OSI really taking the formal position that
> licenses which encourage the creation of commercial products on top of open
> source is a "worthy experiment that has failed" and the the OSI "will
> discourage them" in the future?

Good questions.


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