The Simple Permissive License, v0.1

Zooko zooko at
Fri Feb 8 19:07:20 UTC 2002


I have looked for something like this and haven't found it, so here's my 
attempt.  I welcome feedback even the "it'll never work" kind and especially the 
"it's already been done" kind.

Right now, I think that if the SPL can't get shorter than it is now, then it 
would be better that it didn't exist and people can continue using one of the 
BSD-new/X11/MIT/Expat licenses.  However, if it can get shorter, perhaps even by
eliminating the preservation-of-license or disclaimer-of-warranty parts, then it 
would be worth having as an option for those people who love simplicity and 

It is really intended as an alternative to "This software is hereby placed into 
the public domain." rather than as an alternative to the BSD-new/X11/MIT/Expat 
licenses.  Lots of people are continuing to use "...placed into the public 
domain.", which offers no guarantee of copyright-preservation, license- 
preservation, or disclaimer-of-warranty, so the SPL could hopefully be a superior
alternative for them. 

(This text copied from `'.)

Here is an attempt at a very simple open source license. The goal is to have 
more or less the same legal properties as the MIT or Expat licenses while being
simpler and textually shorter. I am willing to a sacrifice some detail, 
redunancy, and "legalese" in the interest of ruthlessly bumming unnecessary 
words from this text, provided that the result is unambiguous and would clearly 
convey the author's intent to a reasonable reader.

The name of this license is the "The Simple Permissive License". This is not the 
final version -- this is "version 0.1" of The Simple Permissive License.

Please direct all comments to <zooko at>.

----- begin text of The Simple Permissive License v0.1 -----

Copyright (c) [YEAR] [AUTHOR NAME]

Permission is hereby granted to any person to use this software in any way, including to modify it and redistribute it, subject to the following conditions:

The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of this software.


----- end text of The Simple Permissive License v0.1 -----

Thank you for your attention!



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