MS-PL/GPL compatibility, was Re: For Approval: Microsoft Permissive License

Alexander Terekhov alexander.terekhov at
Thu Aug 23 19:29:11 UTC 2007

On 8/23/07, Wilson, Andrew <andrew.wilson at> wrote:
> Alexander, the case under discussion here is what license
> applies to a derivative work which includes source code
> licensed under MS-PL combined with source code
> under a copyleft license to create a derivative work.

What the heck do you mean by combining? In the case you really want to
take this or that interesting element from any licensed code and use
it as basis for your modification of other licensed code (vs
aggregating multiple computer program works without doing any
modifications), I have yet to see how such an element could survive
the AFC test filtering (hint: it must be something really interesting)
to begin with. If in doubt, just use clean room. Big deal. It all
means that "incompatibility" is not an issue unless your view on the
scope of derivative works and modifications is as GNUish as this:

"For a long time we've held a similar position about copyright for
software: just because a program only optionally makes use of GNU
readline, for example, doesn't suddenly excuse the author from the
GPL's requirements."

(and you really want to extend the scope of "same license" requirement
to compilations in U.S. copyright law sense).

Compare it to

(VI.D.4. Derivative Works and Compilations)


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