License for approval

Bruce Perens bruce at
Fri Mar 28 03:07:27 UTC 2008

Allison shi wrote:
> We prefer, as Russ pointed out, that people can use the source codes conform 
> with our UOML standard 
> (
Hello Ms. Shi,

As the license currently reads, a program under it may not access a 
document through any means but UOML. Such a program would not be allowed 
to read plain text files, OpenDocument files, HTML, you name it. It 
would not be allowed to convert documents between UOML and any other 
format. It would not be able to print, which in general requires writing 
a document in the PostScript file format for temporary use by the print 
spooler. It would not be able to present its output via the web, which 
involves writing a document in the HTML format for temporary use.

This seems to very clearly not meet the requirement in the Open Source 
Definition prohibiting discrimination against a field of use.

I am afraid that you have not fully considered the implications of your 
own text. But even a narrower restriction requiring conformance with a 
particular standard would not conform with the requirements of the OSD. 
I think it's necessary to make this clear: an arbitrary use restriction 
is not permissible in an Open Source license.

    Many Thanks

    Bruce Perens

I am speaking for myself, not OSI. I created the OSD, about 6 months 
before OSI formed.

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