[License-review] For Approval: GPL-3+-with-whonix-additional-terms - GPLv3 with improved, legal protections as per GNU GPL version 3 section 7

Richard Fontana richard.fontana at opensource.org
Sun Mar 17 03:42:44 UTC 2019

On Fri, Mar 15, 2019 at 3:50 PM Patrick Schleizer <adrelanos at riseup.net> wrote:
> # Name
> GPL-3+-with-whonix-additional-terms
> # Rationale
> The GPL exclusion of warranties clause may not include infringement
> claims. Other Libre Software licenses do include this. [1]
> Many projects do add additional permissions or terms to the GPL. [2]
> This is possible as per GNU GPL version 3 section 7.
> The text of the GPLv3 remains completely unmodified. A pure use of GNU
> GPL version 3 section 7.

These terms are basically an attempt to make maximum usage of the
allowed additional restrictions stated in section 7 of GPLv3.

I don't think OSI should be considering GPLv3 additional restrictions.
AFAIK OSI has never approved or considered approval of such a
"license".  OSI has approved GPL additional *permissions* in at least
two cases, but they both involved what were conceptually standalone
licenses, in one case having a special pedigree (GNU LGPLv3), and the
other was a submission for legacy approval (eCos License v2.0).
Additional restrictions raise different concerns. OSI should generally
defer to the FSF as to their legitimacy in relation to GPLv3.

I believe this submission is out of scope for OSI license approval and
as such should not be considered by the OSI.

> * Added a "trump clause]" [5], in other words, any conflicts or disputes
> between the additional terms and the GPLv3 shall be resolved in favor of
> the GPLv3 by adding "Notwithstanding any other provision of this
> License" (as mentioned in GPL FAQ [6]) at the beginning of the
> additional terms.

That is not what the "Notwithstanding ..." language means -- it has
the opposite effect, as the GPL FAQ you cite makes clear.

I don't see the value of standardizing on these terms. I suggest you
talk to the FSF and see what they say.


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