[License-review] Outstanding license submissions
Christopher Sean Morrison
brlcad at mac.com
Mon Mar 21 05:23:05 UTC 2016
> Date: Fri, 18 Mar 2016 18:03:32 -0400
> From: Richard Fontana <fontana at opensource.org>
> To: License submissions for OSI review <license-review at opensource.org>
> Subject: Re: [License-review] Outstanding license submissions
> Message-ID: <20160318220332.GA26361 at sharpeleven.org>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8
> On Fri, Mar 18, 2016 at 05:50:38PM -0400, Christopher Sean Morrison wrote:
>>> Date: Thu, 17 Mar 2016 21:00:55 -0400
>>> From: Richard Fontana <fontana at opensource.org>
>>> To: License submissions for OSI review <license-review at opensource.org>
>>> Subject: Re: [License-review] Outstanding license submissions
>>> The possible issue here is not the absence of patent grants in
>>> general, but rather discriminatory imposition of patent licensing
>>> requirements (arguably in violation of OSD 5).
>> I raised this same discriminatory issue regarding Oracle’s UPL, yet the response then was that neither granting nor denying patent rights has any bearing on OSD conformance. I still disagree but the point stands that if it didn’t matter for UPL, I’m not sure why it should matter here.
> I assume it was the point you made here:
> Looking at it now (and looking at the UPL) I don't understand the
> discriminatory concern (I agree with Jim Wright's response) - if you'd
> like to re-explain I'd be interested.
I’m not sure I can articulate better than my original message, but let me try from another angle:
I see the UPL's external larger works file as a mere technical extension of the license text. Given the licensor can essentially put whatever terms they want into this file, I end up with a license potentially containing discriminatory language that would not have been approved by OSI (whether conforming with the OSD or not).
An example discussed was the ability of a licensor to limit a larger works patent granting to a specific audience by putting that qualifier into the larger works file — that this was an intentional feature. Anyone exercising that feature could grant (patent) rights discriminatorily. Sure, someone could amend any of the OSI-licenses in such a way, but none that I’m aware of incorporate such a blank slate to “insert-additional-terms-here”.
Consider a larger works file containing language like “Any and all software and hardware except to anyone that works for company XYZ. Screw them with a bag of hammers."
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