[License-discuss] Proposed license decision process

Luis Villa luis at lu.is
Fri Dec 14 00:06:45 UTC 2018

On Thu, Dec 13, 2018 at 1:53 PM Rick Moen <rick at linuxmafia.com> wrote:

> Quoting Nicholas Matthew Neft Weinstock (nweinsto at qti.qualcomm.com):
> > The possibility of unintentionally including licenses as "Open Source"
> > that the community does not view as providing proper software freedom
> > is mostly philosophical.  But the possibility of licenses no longer
> > being "Open Source" could have real-world implications for projects
> > that already use these licenses, as well as the folks who use those
> > projects.
> I would suggest that there is very little real-world acceptance of very
> peculiar and obscure licences merely on grounds that they became OSI
> Certified through laxity and inattention, long ago.  In particular,
> I think open source coders in general have become fairly skeptical of
> such things when considering what projects to sink time and effort into.
> This is something authors of vanity and crayon licences inevitably don't
> 'get', but I maintain has been generally true for some decades.  There's
> a prevalent (and IMO healthy) attitude that, if a project isn't under
> one of the major licences, at bare minimum this requires a compelling
> explanation about why.
> That's not to say that OSI Certified licences that really shouldn't have
> been approved aren't a lingering problem, but I'd call it a small one.

Agreed that these are a small problem, but possibly a good opportunity for
OSI - an opinionated cleanup of the old cruft might be a nice test case/MVP
for new criteria, if OSI wanted to (re)build confidence in the process and
build some "caselaw" for future reference.

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