Submitting GPLv3 and LGPLv3 for OSI inclusion.
matthew.flaschen at gatech.edu
Fri Jul 6 02:32:01 UTC 2007
Nils Labugt wrote:
> What about political (or religious) statements in a license as a form of
A mere non-binding political statement can not violate OSD #6
I think most will agree that terms like "this license is
> granted to you only if you are a communist" or "you must agree with the
> following communist teachings" would discriminate
You may know this, but I want to be clear; this is a false analogy. The
GPL doesn't say anything like, "This license is granted to you only if
you hate software patents and love free software", even in the preamble.
, but what about a license that contains a lengthy preamble
incorporating The Communist
> Manifesto? I would certainly refuse to click on an "I agree" button
> after reading such a license, nor would I feel free to distribute my
> code under it, and I would thus feel discriminated against (not
> necessarily in a political sense, but in the sense of OSD #5).
This would not violate OSD #5 or 6, since the preamble is not legally
binding. IANAL, but I think at most the preamble could inform
interpretation of the terms of the license. But since the statement
about Communism isn't related to actual terms, I don't think it would be
used in interpretation.
> I realize that a statement like "States should not allow patents to
> restrict development and use of software on general-purpose
> computers..." in the GPLv3 preamble might seem like more of a truism to
> the great majority of (non-corporate) contributors to open source
And to most corporations (even ones that don't support open source!),
even if they can't talk about it as much.
> If a political statement about software patents is
> accepted, on what grounds could a statement about Guantanamo Bay be
It couldn't, at least not on pure OSD grounds. The preamble could say
"Allahu Akbar! We should destroy the Great Satan" and there still
wouldn't be a real OSD violation. All of these statements are of course
bad ideas, because they make people uncomfortable and are not relevant
to the license; however, they're not OSD violations.
If the purpose of the preamble merely is to serve as a
> guidance for the interpretation of the license, rather than serving as a
> soapbox for FSF's political opinions, then it could have been formulated
> without including (explicit) political points of view.
The primary purpose of the GPL preamble is indeed to be a soapbox,
albeit a soapbox that should help explain the license.
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