[License-review] License drafting quality and process [was Re: Comment on MOSL and similar licenses]

John Cowan cowan at mercury.ccil.org
Thu Jun 6 15:21:31 UTC 2013

Luis Villa scripsit:

> I bring it up because we don't have all the tools we need to say no to
> those licenses - it is quite possible to submit a license that
> complies with all our formal requirements without improving the
> overall ecosystem, and we have no formal way to say no to those.

As far as I can tell, there is absolutely nothing in the OSI's mission
that requires it to approve all open-source licenses: you have unfettered
discretion to reject a license that conforms to the OSD for any reason
or none.  IMAO, the OSI should feel free to apply that discretion in
cases like the above, and not find it necessary to hide behind artificial
and formal defenses like "You only have 99 projects using your license,
so we reject it."

Obviously, this discretionary power ought not to be abused.  If it is, the
OSI will speedily become irrelevant (some would say it has already become so).

On the Semantic Web, it's too hard to prove     John Cowan    cowan at ccil.org
you're not a dog.  --Bill de hOra               http://www.ccil.org/~cowan

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