Licensing a python module

Dan Stromberg dstromberglists at
Thu Apr 24 00:30:34 UTC 2008

I wrote a python module:

...a while back that is for wrapping up a string in bash quoting - so if 
you expect to pass it through 3 successive ssh's, one invoking the 
next... (for example), you can wrap up your string in 3 layers of bash 
quoting first, pass it into the nested ssh's (each of which strips off a 
layer using bash) and the original string comes out on the other side of 
the ssh's).

It's been GPLv2.

I'd like to use it in a program I'm writing for my employer, and they 
seem cautious about the GPL.  If a program I write on my employer's time 
uses a python module that is GPL, does that mean the program must also be 
GPL?  Or is that just for linking in the C sense?  It's just a little 
helper program - it probably wouldn't make them give away the keys to the 
kingdom (I'm exaggerating) to GPL the whole thing, but they still might 
be skittish.

I love the GPL, and still want to license most of my on-my-own-time code 
under the GPL, but I'm thinking about relicensing this module under the 
LGPL, the Apache license, or especially: something that would be 
compatible with the python distribution if it were ever to make it into 
that.  And hey, maybe not this one, but maybe some future module, so I 
may as well explore it now...

Does anyone know the in's and out's of relicensing a python module this 
way?  And what license do most python modules use?  What would I need to 

How hard would it be to take a GPLv2 python module and relicense it to 
GPLv2 and something else just for my employer?  The main reason I don't 
favor this is it sounds kind of complicated, but maybe that's just 
because I've heard of it less.

Followups directed to, though 
this being a pair of mailing lists, perhaps that won't change things 
much.  :)


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