[License-discuss] Evolving the License Review process for OSI

Christopher Sean Morrison brlcad at mac.com
Sat Jun 8 02:57:07 UTC 2019

> On Jun 7, 2019, at 6:23 PM, Thorsten Glaser <tg at mirbsd.de> wrote:
> The reason I postulate one can absolutely not even come
> anywhere close to checking whether a licence is in use
> is that people don’t necessarily use public hosting
> services, nor even all that well-known ones…

Code under an Open Source license that is not publicly available might as well not be.  If it’s not publicly available and discoverable, I’m not sure I’d care or consider them a qualifying use (for purposes of being considered a license in use).

> I mean, who searches for things at edugit.org (ok maybe some)
> or evolvis.org… or even things like the MirBSD CVS repo
> or whatever private (but in theory publicly accessible)
> git self-hosting I do?

Search engines can find many of such instances as that’s exactly what they do, but it obviously might require unique searchable terms in the license to find the occurrence.

> Or things where source tarballs
> sent across the ether (or, worse, snail mail) are the
> only form?

I’d argue these are not only in the vast minority, but reiterate my view that if they're not discoverable, that usage might as well not be considered as it fails an Open Source tenant imho.

> I think you cannot even get anything resembling a
> representative number even with quite some effort.

If those instances even represented 0.1%, I would be shocked but I think a starting point is a simple discovery of non-zero utilization of all licenses.  See if there are any where active use cannot be discerned.


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