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

Bruce Perens bruce at perens.com
Mon Jun 10 20:04:51 UTC 2019

Open Research Institute will pursue setting up a non-profit hosting service
with the open source and ethical qualities we all desire. Since this is
potentially a multi-million dollar crowdfunding, it will take a little time
to get started.



On Mon, Jun 10, 2019, 12:14 Christopher Sean Morrison via License-discuss <
license-discuss at lists.opensource.org> wrote:

> > Actually, what Thorsten Glaser said was:
> [snip]
> Not sure if quoting the entire e-mail is actually in disagreement with my
> characterization or just being pedantic, but I did not find it helpful.  If
> anything, it’s a circular pitfall that I’m not going to repeat beyond to
> address the additional point reiterated:
> >  I think you cannot even get anything resembling a
> >  representative number even with quite some effort.
> >
> > The point seems well-taken:
> Except that we don’t need a representative number.  If use cannot be
> found, that would not imply there isn’t any.  I certainly haven’t said that.
> > Often-suggested licence census tools
> > tend to check only major public repos, and that couldn't establish that
> > an OSI Approved licence isn't used, only that it wasn't grepped for
> > in major public repos, because that is just _not_ a proxy for 'public
> > availability and discoverability' (your term), hence not sufficient.
> Not necessarily sufficient.  Academically, sure, but with the specific OSI
> list, it may or may not be sufficient.  The broken-record point is to
> narrow the discussion to licenses that are not “trivially” (my term) found,
> to better understand (and document) license use, and help drive future
> decisions that will get made regardless.
> >> What I would expect is all but a handful are really trivial, and then
> >> a more productive conversation (and more rigorous discovery) could be
> >> made with those few.
> >
> > Again, implicitly this dismisses codebases not currently present in major
> > public repos for whatever reason, or, further to Thorsten's point, with
> > licence grants only in the Cyrillic or Greek or Devangari alphabets, etc.
> Nothing is being dismissed, implicitly or otherwise.  On the contrary, I
> suggested that should lead to more productive conversation on those
> licenses.
> I’d rather engage in constructive discussion, not to assume they aren’t
> used, but to better know how they are / were used and take steps from
> there.  Naysaying without an alternative is not constructive.  Doing
> nothing is not constructive either, imho, and that is perhaps where we
> disagree.
> Sean
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