[License-discuss] Companies that encourage license violations

Lawrence Rosen lrosen at rosenlaw.com
Sat Sep 19 15:39:01 UTC 2015

John, an open source license is not a nudum pactum. Consideration abounds in FOSS. Paraphrasing Wikipedia (the easy source for all law references):


The Jacobsen v. Katzer case is noteworthy in United States copyright law because Courts clarified the enforceability of licensing agreements on both open-source software and proprietary software. The case established the rule of law that terms and conditions of an Artistic License are "enforceable copyright conditions".





-----Original Message-----
From: John Cowan [mailto:cowan at mercury.ccil.org] 
Sent: Friday, September 18, 2015 1:01 PM
To: license-discuss at opensource.org
Subject: Re: [License-discuss] Companies that encourage license violations


Pamela Chestek scripsit:


> Without entering into that quagmire [...]  my use of the word "contract"

> was simply inapt. The principle applies in the interpretation of all 

> types legal documents.


Sure.  But if it is not meaningless, what does it mean?  Since the right of an owner to revoke a bare license is inherent, it must be a promise not to exercise that right, and on what meeting of the minds, what consideration is that promise founded?  Looks like a nudum pactum to me.



John Cowan           <http://www.ccil.org/~cowan> http://www.ccil.org/~cowan         <mailto:cowan at ccil.org> cowan at ccil.org

        Is it not written, "That which is written, is written"?


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