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

Matthew Flaschen matthew.flaschen at
Thu Aug 23 20:26:15 UTC 2007

John Cowan wrote:

>    Definitely.  It's a derivative work, and the MS-PL says you can make
>    those freely

I don't know about freely.  It of course says, "each contributor grants
you a non-exclusive, worldwide, royalty-free copyright license to [...]
prepare derivative works of its contribution, and distribute [...] any
derivative works that you create."

However, this is "Subject to the [...] limitations in section 3".  One
of those limitations is: "If you distribute any portion of the software
in source code form, you may do so only under this license"

>, and the Copyright Act says you can license them however
>    you like, provided your making the derivative work in the first place
>    was lawful.

And the question I think is whether the license permits making a
derivative work licensed as a whole under the GPL.  I think the
limitation I named forbids this.

Matt Flaschen

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