Best base license to pick?

Alex Bligh alex at
Thu Feb 10 12:15:42 UTC 2005

--On 09 February 2005 15:53 -0500 John Cowan <jcowan at> 

>> There is a difference between "license allows" and "license requires."
>> But anyway, that's just one person's opinion. I don't make decisions
>> about license approval.
> Construe, construe!
> An open-source license must:
> 1. EITHER permit modified works to be distributed in modified form,
> 2. OR, forbid such distribution but allow distribution in
> pristine+patches form.

OK, well I've done some work based on the MPL v1.1. Whilst it doesn't
explicitly say one can modify it, it does appear that they anticipated
this, asking one to change the name etc. - it looks like a suitable base.

I propose using something similar to the MPL with the following one clause
substitution. The terms of the modification are based upon the QPL,
except I have made it even more clearly in compliance with Para 4 of
the OSD.

Would such a license be compliant with the OSD? (I am not asking
right now whether it would be desirable etc.)

3.3. Modifications.

(a) Descriptions

You must cause all Covered Code to which You contribute to contain a file
documenting the changes You made to create that Covered Code and the date
of any change. You must include a prominent statement that the Modification
is licensed under the under the terms of this License or a future version
of this License released under Section 6.1 and that the Modification is
derived, directly or indirectly, from Original Code provided by the Initial
Developer and including the name of the Initial Developer in (a) the Source
Code, and (b) in any notice in an Executable version or related
documentation in which You describe the origin or ownership of the Covered

(b) Distribution Format

You may not distribute Modifications except under this license. You may not
distribute Covered Code to which any Modification has been made (by You or
by any Contributor) unless it is a form which includes both the Original
Code, and the Modifications in a form that is separate from the Original
Code such as patches. You may not distribute Modifications which alter or
remove any copyright notices in the Original Code. Nothing in this Section
3.3(b) shall prevent You from distributing software built from Covered Code
to which Modifications have been made, but in that case You must make the
Source Code and Modifications thereto available in a manner compliant with
the conditions of Section 3.2 and this Section 3.3(b).

(c) License

By distributing Modifications under this license, a non-exclusive
royalty-free right is granted to the Initial Developer of the Software to
distribute your Modification in future versions of the Original Code
provided such versions remain available under the terms of this License or
a future version of this License released under Section 6.1, in addition to
any other license(s) of the Initial Developer.


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