[License-discuss] FAQ entry for slight variations in licenses?
kfogel at red-bean.com
Thu Mar 7 23:01:03 UTC 2013
Luis Villa <luis at tieguy.org> writes:
>A comment on the ISC license page (found by Engel- thanks!) points out
>that there is more than one variation of the ISC license. This is a
>common issue for the older permissive licenses, unfortunately.
>Driven by this question, I think we might want a FAQ entry that
>answers the following question:
>Q: "I know about a variant of an approved license that differs from
>the approved license by only one or two words. Is the variant also an
>A: Something along the lines of: "Many older licenses have a variety
>of minor variations in the language. Unfortunately, it is not possible
>for OSI to review every variation, so we cannot say if a given
>variation is approved."
>Unfortunately, this is a bit of a non-answer, but I'm not seeing a
>good way to address it. Perhaps someone here can give a more
>useful/constructive answer that I'm not seeing right now?
"Many older licenses have a variety of minor variations in the
language. Unfortunately, it is not possible for OSI to review every
variation, so we cannot say if a given variation is approved. However,
if you have a competent lawyer review the variation and you conclude
that it is minor and could not possibly have any legal signifance, in
terms of the license being compatible with the Open Source Definition,
then if you use that license and call the licensed software 'open
source', there is at least a possibility that any subsequent discussion
with the OSI about it would go well. Please use good judgement and be
conservative in this situation."
Not terribly much more meaningful, really, but maybe enough for most
people to work with & do what they need to do? :-)
Comments, missiles welcome...
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