For Approval: Fair License

James William Pye x at
Wed Apr 27 07:06:51 UTC 2005

On Fri, 2005-03-25 at 20:46 +0000, Matthew Garrett wrote:
> I worry that it's not clear that "modification" or "distribution" fall
> within "use". The BSD license explicitly lists each of these
> independently.

You raise a concern that others have "more or less" expressed on
debian-legal and debian-devel, which only recently I have noticed.

I don't think I am going to be able to find any resources that would
show "use", in the context of copyright law/Title 17/Berne Convention,
means the following:
       6: (law) the exercise of the legal right to enjoy the benefits
          of owning property; "we were given the use of his boat"
          [syn: {enjoyment}]
       WordNet 2.0(r)

Yes, this was an assumption that I made. I had considered expanding it
earlier, but I figured I'd see what others had to say about it to be
sure that 'use' wasn't apt. Most seem to think that it isn't, while some
others think that it is. So, I think it is likely that I'm going to have
to expand the first instance of 'use' in the license, as it would be
better to be safe than sorry.

Heh, that little alarm Bruce Perens refers to in another thread was
going off.

So for the time being, I think this approval should be put on hold. (It
seems to be anyways(candidate for filtering?). I assume the OSI is quite
busy with restructuring.)

The new version will likely incorporate the above definition one way or


---not for approval---
        The enjoyment and the exercise of the rights granted by
        authorship of the works is authorized provided that this
        instrument is retained with the works, so that any entity
        that uses the works is notified of this instrument.
---not for approval---

Although, that seems a bit confusing, so it would seem some tweaking
should be done.
Regards, James William Pye

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