OVPL summary

David Barrett dbarrett at quinthar.com
Wed Sep 14 19:40:34 UTC 2005

Michael Bernstein wrote:
> But what about the fact that any *private* changes you make to the
> software can be demanded by the ID and incorporated into both their
> proprietary version *and* the public version, regardless of your wishes?

I thought we went down this path already and found this to be a red 
herring.  It was my impression that the OVPL's "distribution" 
requirements are no different than the typical licenses:

- If you distribute to anyone, you must distribute to everyone (ID too)
- If you distribute to no one, you needn't distribute to anyone (nor ID)
- Therefore ID has no greater access to your changes than anyone else.

If this isn't right, can somebody summarize with similar brevity?

Naturally, this is a question of what it means to "distribute" but this 
isn't an OVPL-specific concern:

- If "you" are a company, giving your employees access does not 
constitute "distribution" (because your employees are part of "you")
- If "you" are a company, giving your customers access *does* constitute 
"distribution" (because your customers are not part of "you")

Again, this is a subtle and tricky subject, and more a ambiguity of 
open-source licenses in general than the OVPL specifically.  Is this 
accurate?  If not, can you summarize in a concise yet accurate form?


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