Adaptive Public License

John Cowan cowan at
Fri May 13 20:33:09 UTC 2011

TW scripsit:

> The Initial Contributor holds the copyright to the Initial Work, so he
> is free to relicense the Initial Work as he likes anyway, right?

Yes, but the relicensing does not automatically apply to pre-existing
copies of the work, unless language like 5.2 is present.

> what does this section mean?  Does it mean something similar to the
> GPL section that says, the FSF may publish revised versions of the
> GPL, and any GPLed work may be used/distributed/modified under the
> revised version,

There is no such GPL provision.  When the GPL is *applied*, it is common
to use language like "version 2 or any later version", but some works,
like the Linux kernel, just say "version 2" and so version 3 is not
applicable to them.

> Wouldn't this give the Initial Contributor a lot of control over
> Subsequent Works, even if most of the work has been done by others
> after his Initial Contribution?  Could a revised/new version of the
> License be a completely different license like the GPL or a so called
> "Shared Source" license?  Would any Person be allowed to use any
> Subsequent Works that *predate* the revision of the License under the
> revised License?

Yes to all of these questions.  However, the licensee is always free to
use the older version if they prefer it.

Verbogeny is one of the pleasurettes    John Cowan <cowan at>
of a creatific thinkerizer.   
   --Peter da Silva

More information about the License-discuss mailing list