[Fwd: FW: For Approval: Generic Attribution Provision]

Matthew Flaschen matthew.flaschen at gatech.edu
Sun Jan 21 06:28:12 UTC 2007

Peter Kloprogge wrote:
> Which # are you referring within the definition that limits an attribution 
> provision? #6 or #10 (or perhaps another)?

As I've said, GAP definitely violates 10, but also probably 3 and maybe 6.

> I cannot comment on your other statements as I'm too new to open source. But it 
> does sound weird if the execution of the definition (in 10 statements) becomes 
> OSI's mission instead of having a clear/mission that is executed by 'managing' 
> the definition.

The mission is simple: promote open source. OSI already knew what open
source was when it was founded.  DFSG and the FSF's definition had taken
care of that.  As Rick said, changes since the OSD was created were only
for clarification.  There were no changes in the core meaning, and I
hope there never are.

 Any good management will have a clear mission and vision and the
> OSD should be the best possible definition towards the set mission.

OSI's basic practical mission is to tell the world what meets OSD.  As
you should be able to see, that's not as easy as it looks from the
outside.  OSI also tries to promote open source (especially in the
business world); this is secondary but important.

 So I would
> be very disappointed in OSI if indeed the OSD is the core mission!
> To state that, within my rationale, we could just as well accept shared source 
> is an insult. If distribution is key to OSI's mission, shared source won't comply!

Microsoft Limited Community License (Ms-LCL) allows redistribution and
modification, as long as you don't modify the software to work on
GNU/Linux (or any other non-MS platform).  Is it open source?  No,
because it violates OSD #10, #3, and maybe 6...

> And once we start reading the front page it also mentions: "This site is still 
> evolving as we think through the implications of open source in the commercial 
> world. We don't claim to have all the answers yet, so mail us 
> <mailto:osi at opensource.org> with your thoughts and criticisms." And that's what 
> I'm doing, contemplating about how (what I expect to be) OSI's mission could be 
> better served in the commercial world.

I don't think that ever meant they're thinking about changing (at least
not substantially) OSD, but rather other parts of their site.

> So the question remains: is an attribution provision against the current OSD 
> and, if so, is that a wise choice?

Yes to the first, for reasons I've elaborated elsewhere.  No to the
second, because OSI's job is promoting open source as defined by the
current OSD.

Matthew Flaschen

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