Choosing a license

Smith, McCoy mccoy.smith at
Thu May 10 20:27:03 UTC 2007

Lgpl is being revised simultaneous with gpl.  See current draft (and
other information about that draft and prior drafts) here:

-----Original Message-----
From: Bruce Alspaugh [mailto:compulinkltd at] 
Sent: Thursday, May 10, 2007 1:21 PM
To: license-discuss at
Subject: Choosing a license

My company is considering releasing a software library under an 
open-source license, but since we are developers not lawyers we could 
use some advise in selecting the most appropriate license. We would like

to choose a license with the following characteristics:

1.  We want to allow others to link closed-source or commercial software

with our open-source software library. We would like for them to give 
notice or acknowledgment that the work was used in it.

2.  If someone modifies the source of the library, we want to require 
them to release the modification so we could at our option legally 
include the modification in future versions of the library. 

3.  We would like to protect ourselves and contributors to the 
open-source software library when it comes to software patents.  We like

provision 3 of the Apache 2.0 license.

Can you give us a list of software licenses that have these 
characteristics? The LGPL looks close but I don't see anything like 
characteristic 3.  The Apache 2.0 looks close, but I think it lacks 
characteristic 2. 

Are there any plans to revise the LGPL when the GPLv3 is finished to 
better deal with patents?



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