For Approval: Transitive Grace Period Public Licence, v1.0

Russ Nelson nelson at
Fri Feb 20 06:23:32 UTC 2009

Tzeng, Nigel H. writes:
 > Once the source is available it is OSL.  But you can add your new proprietary 
 > code to it without needing to release that new code for 12 months.

This works so badly in so many ways I don't know where to start, but
I'll do my best..  First, you have the problem that the copyright
holder needs to keep track of some piece of proprietary software which
includes his software even though there is no requirement for the
licensor to tell him.  Second, you need the copyright holder to CARE;
arguably a problem with any other open source code as well, but with
EVERY OTHER license, you know from the start whether the copyright
holder cares.  With this license, you only find out a year later.
Third, the licensor only needs to release source for the code that is
a year old, so it's not like you get a code dump; instead you get a
constant trickle of year-old code which may be useful to nobody given
that it's a change to code that is a year old.

This is, bluntly, one of the least-well-conceived ideas for a license
I've seen in about seven years.

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