Radical Suggestion WAS: License Proliferation Dissatisfaction

Matthew Flaschen matthew.flaschen at gatech.edu
Mon Apr 23 02:44:20 UTC 2007

Andrew C. Oliver wrote:

> Make the statement that new
> revisions of existing licenses (such as the GPLv3) will still be
> considered provided they are "substantially similar" to their
> predecessors in terms and spirit.

If they're so similar, why should we approve them?  The answer is that
there may be necessary (or at least very useful) changes, as (I think)
GPLv3 makes.  But then why should we only allow useful changes if
they're made to an existing license?  That really doesn't make sense,
since a new license is new regardless of whether it updates an approved
license.  So then we should allow useful updates to existing licenses,
or new licenses that serve a useful purpose.  I think that basically
brings us the board's current (unstated) stance.  Now, I agree with you
that not many new licenses will be both OSD-compliant and useful, and I
think the board and list understand that.

Matthew Flaschen

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