[License-discuss] Special clauses added to OSI-approved licenses: are they OK, and if not, what can/should we do about it?

Marc Laporte marc at marclaporte.com
Thu Dec 29 01:51:54 UTC 2011


I am a member of the Tiki Wiki CMS Groupware Community. In Tiki, we
include quite a few libraries: http://dev.tiki.org/External+Libraries

I am also working on "Tiki Suite", a dozen FOSS server and desktop
apps to cover what 80% of the people use 80% of the time for a typical
small or medium organization. -> http://suite.tiki.org/

So I invest a lot of time evaluating FOSS projects and license
compatibility is important. I am also concerned with license
proliferation in general, as a barrier for sharing code.

I occasionally notice projects which add clauses such as this one

Here are three more:

a) AskoziaPBX is BSD with an extra clause

b) Roundcube intends to move to GPLv3+  with an exception:

c) sipXecs is AGPL and there are some additional clauses, including
"By using the sipXecs solution you agree that SIPfoundry can use your
name and logo to identify you as a user of the sipXecs solution"

1- Do these examples above respect the Free Software and/or Open
Source definitions?
(If not, can you specify what is not respecting)

Of course, they are free to use whatever license they want. However,
in some cases, calling it "Open Source" or "Free Software" can be

2- If not, what is done / can be done about this?

a) Contacting the project to discuss with them and try to find a solution.

b) Contacting Open Source directories such as Ohloh.net and getting
the project entries removed.
I already started a discussion (please join in!)

c) Correcting the Wikipedia entries

d) Other?   (Maintain a list of projects which claim to be Open Source
but that their license is not according to experts at OSI)

What do you think?

Best regards,

Marc Laporte


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