Open Library Public License concept.
david at einet.com.au
Fri Feb 11 02:16:58 UTC 2005
In the short time I've been reading this list, and from reading archived
posts I've seen there has been a number of people interested in
releasing software under a license similar to the QTPL. However found
the QTPL lacking or incompatible with other licenses. In the next month
or two I will be approaching a lawyer to attempt to create such a
library license which is hopefully less lacking. I'm hopeful that they
will word the license so that it can be reused (and also allow it to be
Before I approach the lawyers, I'd like to get some feedback on the
basic concept. See if the concept is compatible with OSI, and if anyone
has any objections. I'd also be interested to know if anyone would
reuse such a license.
The basic blocks of the license will be the following:
- The library license will be based on the concepts of a standard
copyleft license such as OSL or GPL.
- A clause will be added which licenses back contributions to the
- A clause will be added which outlines how the library can be used:
* Any deployed(as defined in OSL) software must be licenced using an
OSI approved license.
* If the items are not available to the general public, you must
supply one on request.
The first additional clause to license back contributions could be
handled in the same way Sun handles OpenOffice with a separate copyright
attribution. It is in the license to protect the original author
against developers who find a bug and fix it and release a forked
version and do not allow that contribution to be added into the
original. If the software gets tainted with fixes from the forked
version the original author will not be able to use any other license.
The second clause is designed to be more liberal than something like the
Reciprocal Public License which forces people who use the library to use
the RPL. Allowing software that uses the library to be licensed using
an OSI approved license allows more flexibility in using the license.
The final clause is really just a clarification of the previous clause.
It is really designed to make sure commercial companies using the
library are required to release their the source code to the software
that uses the library.
One concept I'd like to achieve with this license is that users can
build software using the library and have more control over the terms of
their own license. I'd also like users of the library to be able to
build software and aslong as they retain copyrights be able to switch to
a commercial license in the future.
I look forward to your feedback,
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