[License-review] META: license review tracking (was Re: Outstanding license submissions)

Christopher Sean Morrison brlcad at mac.com
Fri Feb 5 06:09:28 UTC 2016

On Feb 4, 2016, at 10:58:15 -0500, Richard Fontana wrote:

>> I think it would be helpful for
>> this group to establish (or update/enforce if one exists) a social
>> contract so license submitters have some expectation of activity or
>> response that is respectful of the process, the reviewers, and the
>> submitter.
> I basically agree with that. I would just say that, without in any way
> excusing the continued delay surrounding NOSA 2.0 (entirely my fault
> apart from the inherent complexity of the license), I believe NOSA 2.0
> is a unique case.

Without a doubt unique, but a social contract would at least establish expectations, regardless of complexity.  If that can include some modicum of a timeframe guarantee, even better (e.g., some discussion or identifiable action will occur at least once a month for all outstanding submissions).  To me, this is not much different than a patches tracker.  Some will require rework, others rejected, some hard to review and accept without deeper consideration.  Complex should be be expected.

I don’t think any single person is or should be to blame for a complex review taking a long time, so long as progress is consistent, reasonable, and fair.  Documenting what can be expected of both sides would help ensure those values.

>> A couple years ago at the OSI summit in DC, I think it was Patrick
>> that announced proposals could be submitted to OSI to fund
>> infrastructure projects.  Perhaps this should be utilized, to ensure
>> license review infrastructure actually gets set up.  I'd be happy to
>> champion a write-up -- progress really needs to be more consistent.
> I don't think the issue with NOSA 2.0 is really an *infrastructure*
> issue, except in that mailing list discussion may be an insufficiently
> suitable form of scrutiny of a relatively complex license like NOSA
> 2.0.

It’s definitely not — and I would not purport a technical solution to what is ostensibly a legal, mental energy, and social situation.  Infrastructure would help visibly keep track of what is outstanding, basically serving a similar purpose as periodic e-mails without the submitter needing to be a squeaky wheel to get status or action.  I would expect this bit of infrastructure to report status, what is required next, and help hold everyone accountable to any social contract timeframes.

>> Looking at the Fall 2015 face-to-face meeting minutes, there was an
>> unassigned action to follow up with some offer from GitHub.  No
>> update in the December meeting.  What was the nature of GitHub's
>> offer?  Is progress being made?
> Offhand I don't recall what this was but I'll check the minutes and
> ask Patrick.

If there’s a POC to that discussion (on the GitHub or OSI side), I’d be happy to follow-up as well.


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