[License-discuss] proposal to revise and slightly reorganize the OSI licensing pages

Chad Perrin perrin at apotheon.com
Sat Jun 9 16:42:17 UTC 2012

On Thu, Jun 07, 2012 at 03:09:47PM -0700, Luis Villa wrote:
> On Thu, Jun 7, 2012 at 3:04 PM, John Cowan <cowan at mercury.ccil.org> wrote:
> > Chad Perrin scripsit:
> >
> >> Is "have been approved through the [OSI's] license review process" really
> >> a requirement for being an "open source license", or is that just a
> >> requirement for being *certified* as an "open source license" by the OSI?
> >
> > Clearly the latter.  The text should be adjusted accordingly, as there are
> > several reasons why a license might be Open Source but not OSI-approved:
> >
> > 1) It has not been submitted for certification in proper form.
> >
> > 2) The Board considers it a vanity license.
> >
> > 3) The Board believes that it substantially duplicates an existing license.
> >
> >> It seems that there is a distinction to be made between "OSI-approved"
> >> and merely "open source", where "open source" would *by definition*
> >> (tautologically, it seems) be any license that conforms to the definition
> >> of open source.
> >
> > Exactly.
> I've got a partial draft response to Chad drafted, but John covers
> most of it - the general point is definitely well-taken. I'm about to
> leave on vacation, so am a bit crunched for time- if someone would
> propose an alternate wording, I'd appreciate it.

I've been without email for about two and a half days, which accounts for
the delay in my response.  I just wanted to thank you both for your
replies, clarifying the intent of the passage I quoted.

I think the sentence in question can be best "fixed" by breaking it into
two sentences, one each about what qualifies as an open source license
and what the OSI review process does.  While the following can surely
stand some improvement, it may give a sense of what I mean as an example
of how the edited form might be structured:

    Open Source licenses are licenses that comply with the Open Source
    Definition.  The Open Source Initiative's review process is used to
    approve licenses for certification by the Open Source Initiative, as
    examples of licenses that conform to the Open Source Definition that
    should be regarded as well-established within the Open Source

I hope that helps get the ball rolling on a revision.

Chad Perrin [ original content licensed OWL: http://owl.apotheon.org ]

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