[License-discuss] [Non-DoD Source] Re: "Fairness" vs. mission objectives

Nigel T nigel.2048 at gmail.com
Wed Feb 26 16:02:55 UTC 2020

There was a small but vocal effort that successfully stopped NOSA 3.0 despite it fixing issues in NOSA 2.0.  The claim was that the problematic clause(s) failed the OSD and were unnecessary even though government lawyers thought it was necessary.  These clauses, of course, exist in NOSA 2.0.  

In those threads it was argued that approval of NOSA was a mistake. 

I have little reason to believe that I can do anything to slow down Perens or Fontana should they choose to seek to decertify NOSA 2.0 once a decertification process exists.

Hopefully they settle for just deprecation.

So no, I’m no longer very interested tilting at windmills and frankly, given that CC0 is an accepted Open Source license it may not really matter if they decertify NOSA.  It will remain Open Source regardless of the OSI‘s position as long as the wider community continues to accept it as Open Source. 

I really stopped caring after Luis Villa got chased away for using “bad words”.  He said something along the lines of not feeling like he was providing much value by repeating the same points over and over again.

But some points have to reiterated over and over again because they are important and does have tremendous value because other folks are trying to erode those points away through sheer persistence.  So he will be missed.

I should have said that then and the whole CAL experience also drained any enthusiasm to continue to tilt at windmills.  So I get why he left.

My feelings are that there are more lawyers and activists than developers participating in the license process and there is a lack of pragmatism that seemed to exist when I first joined the list around 2010.

Not that I sling a lot of code these days...it’s more PowerPoint than code a decade later.

> On Feb 25, 2020, at 7:54 PM, Eric S. Raymond <esr at thyrsus.com> wrote:
> Nigel T <nigel.2048 at gmail.com>:
>> There is a significant difference between deprecating and decertification.
>> A deprecated api can still be used.  One removed (aka decertified) cannot.  
>> The bar for decertification should be exceedingly high.
>> And how is “bad” decided?  Is the limited patent clause in ECL v2 “bad” because it doesn’t go far enough?  This this form of “bad” sufficient for deprecation or even decertification?  
>> Should all licenses without an explicit unlimited patent clause be “decertified” as “open source”?
>> Deprecation is less damaging although deprecating a license with a significant community is unnecessarily divisive especially when these kinds of decisions are often the result of a small but vocal group more interested in ideological purity than access to code.
>> Frankly even deprecation should require more than a simple board vote behind closed doors.  
>> De-certification even more so.   
>> You’re voting people off the open source island when decertifying.  It should be a long, arduous process requiring many checks.
> Before you worry too much about zealotry, maybe you should wait to see
> what licenses people choose to try tio deprecate.  I don't look at OSI
> and see a collection of ideological nutcases; I am *not* worried.
> If you want to be a conservative, anti-decertification voice in these
> debates, go to it.  Somebody ought to be.  I don't anticipate myself
> taking an extreme strance in either direction.
> There are a lot of licenses I would like to see deprecated, but I
> can't yet think of one I would instantly decertify.
> Personally, I have kind of seized on deprecation as a concept because of cases
> like...oh, the PNG Reference Library License.  A perfectly sound and
> conformant license that I wouldn't dream of decertifying, but we'd
> all be better off if nobody ever used it again, adopting instead some
> common license wuth a better-developed interpretive tradition.
> -- 
>    <a href="http://www.catb.org/~esr/">Eric S. Raymond</a>

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