AFL 3.0

John Cowan cowan at
Wed Apr 4 22:03:11 UTC 2007

Lawrence Rosen scripsit:

> Can anyone name for me the license with which it is redundant? Remember,
> in law as in software, close isn't enough!!!!

Note the phrase "completely or partially redundant" in the description of
this license group.  There are terms in the AFL that address questions
such as choice of law that aren't in the Apache 2.0 license.  Likewise,
there are matters that are addressed differently.  But the AFL is
competing with Apache 2.0, BSD, and MIT for the same ecological niche --
simple permissive licenses -- and it is not winning.  I think that's a
pity, but I also see that it's a fact.

Likewise, the OSL wound up in the catchall category because it's a
copyleft license that's incompatible with the GPL (not in your reading
of the GPL, I know, but for social purposes it's the FSF's reading that
counts), and we don't need yet another separate copyleft commons.

> The categories of licenses that OSI has created are, for the most part,
> legally meaningless for purposes of choosing or understanding a license.

Probably so, but that doesn't mean they are meaningless in practice.

John Cowan    <cowan at>
But no living man am I!  You look upon a woman.  Eowyn I am, Eomund's daughter.
You stand between me and my lord and kin.  Begone, if you be not deathless.
For living or dark undead, I will smite you if you touch him.

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