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Here is my latest attempt at the QPL. This is based on QPL v.92 and I
hope I can get a few suggestions about section 3(c). It just seems like
it could and should be more clear to me.
This proposal _IS_ GPL compatible. If you can read it and say it's not,
I will say I want two cases of whatever you're smoking RIGHT NOW. => I
am confident section 7 would answer everyone's concerns about the GPL and
also that the clause is safe to use considering the rest of the license.
I hope Troll Tech agrees with me, we shall see.
Suggestions, comments, feedback, large sums of money, etc are welcome as
they usually are.
NO ONE expects the Spanish Inquisition!
THE Q PUBLIC LICENSE version 0.92+knghtbrd1
Copyright (C) 1998 Troll Tech AS, Norway.
Everyone is permitted to copy and
distribute this license document.
# Changes made to v0.92:
# * Removed 4(c)
# * Moved restriction from top of 3 down to 3(b), and as a result...
# * Moved 3(b) down to 3(c)
# * Rewrote 3(b) a bit, it's a bit clearer now.
# * Rewrote 3(c) a LOT, it's probably not as clear now as it was before,
# though for other reasons the new wording is better I think.
# * Added 7. While seemingly a logical thing to do for me, it probably
# will be one of the more controversial changes I made.
# Annotations and my own notes applied where I feel them needed.
This license applies to any software containing a notice placed by the
copyright holder saying that it may be distributed under the terms of
the Q Public License version 0.92. Such software is herein referred to
as the Software. This license covers modification and distribution of
the Software, use of third-party application programs based on the
Software, and development of free software which uses the Software.
1. You are granted the rights set forth in this license provided you
agree to any and all conditions in this license. Whole or partial
distribution of the Software, or software items that link with the
Software, in any form signifies acceptance of this license.
2. You may copy and distribute the Software in unmodified form
provided that the entire package is distributed, including this
3. You may make and distribute modifications to the Software. These
restrictions apply to distribution of modifications:
# If you make changes which affect the contents of the archives, you may
# only distribute them under the following conditions:
a. Modifications must not remove or alter Copyright notices in the
software or accompanying documentation.
b. Modifications must be distributed in a form which distinguishes them
from the Software distributed by the Copyright holder. The preferred
method of distribution is as a patch file. Modifications should
include documentation such as the nature, author, and date of the
# [ Might be wise to replace should with must in that last sentance? ]
# When possible, you should make your changes available as patch files like
# you would create with a program like diff. Life in general will be happier
# if you do. If for some reason making a patch file is not possible or not
# reasonable, it is then up to you to do something sane and responsible to
# distinguish your version from the official version. You can't just
# redistribute your changes as if it was an unmodified copy of the software.
# It's also good programming practice to document your changes to someone
# else's code so when they look at your patch they know what your change
# does exactly.
c. Modifications must be licensed under terms which comply with this
license. In order for a modification to be considered for inclusion as
part of future versions of the Software it must also grant the
Copyright holder permission to license the modification under other
terms. In order to facilitate this, modifications for the Software
under this license will imply this permission unless you state
otherwise. The Copyright holder agrees in exchange for this permission
to release future versions of the Software under these terms in
addition to any other license(s).
# [ Now that was a mouthful! I feel the above could be better written.
# Suggestions welcome and encouraged! ]
# Here the license of modifications is discussed. You are free to license
# your modifications how you wish provided they are compatible with this
# There is another issue, however: Troll Tech has a professional license
# which allows you to for a fee do things which this license does not allow.
# As a result, they cannot use modifications which do not allow them to
# release both their professional and free products. If your modification
# is written for Qt and released under the QPL, you give Troll Tech
# permission to use your modification under any license they like, provided
# it's also available under this license unless you explicitly say
# Since your modifications will not be included in the next version unless
# Troll Tech has the ability to incorporate the code into both of their
# products, it is in your best interests as well as theirs to license your
# changes under the QPL and allow Troll Tech to incorporate them. It is of
# course your responsibility to make certain if your change incorporates any
# code which you do not own Copyright for and if that is the case that the
# owner of the Copyright for the incorporated code also gives permission.
4. You may distribute machine-executable forms of the Software or
machine-executable forms of modified versions of the Software,
provided that you meet these restrictions:
a. You must include this license document in the distribution.
b. You must ensure that all recipients of the machine-executable
forms are also able to receive the complete machine-readable source
code to the distributed Software, including all modifications,
without any charge beyond the costs of data transfer, and place
prominent notices in the distribution explaining this.
5. You may use the original or modified versions of the Software to
compile, link and run application programs legally developed by you or
# [ Is this necessary? In my outline of the changes I planned to make to
# v.92 I asked that. I believe that it is not unreasonable and does not
# cause any real harm or otherwise cause the software not to be free under
# any definition I can think of, including the DFSG. And besides, I think
# it's a good idea to say something like it anyway. ]
6. You may develop application programs, reusable components and other
software items that link with the original or modified versions of the
Software. These items, when distributed, are subject to the following
a. You must ensure that all recipients of machine-executable forms
of these items are also able to receive and use the complete
machine-readable source code to the items without any charge beyond
the costs of data transfer.
b. You must explicitly license all recipients of your items to use
and re-distribute original and modified versions of the items in
both machine-executable and source code forms. The recipients must
be able to do so without any charges whatsoever, and they must be
able to re-distribute to anyone they choose.
7. At your discretion you may use this Software under the terms of the
GNU General Public License, Version 2 or later. You are asked to keep
the preferences and requests made in this license in mind if you choose
to do this and should remain aware the GNU GPL has additional rquirements
not found in this license.
# [ If this doesn't make people happy, I have no idea what will.
# At one point durring my proposed revisions to this license near the very
# beginning, I included a clause similar to the above. I ended up
# removing it then as I was not comfortable with it given the rest of the
# license and I was concerned about forks which Troll Tech would be unable
# to use if this were permitted. A bit of inspiration as a result of the
# many discussions had since then and the current license cause me to
# believe my concern about forked versions is no longer a serious issue.
# At this point, it is my personal opinion the QPL as I propose here is
# equivalent to the terms of the GPL with exception to the requirements
# placed on all derived works in the GPL. The QPL's restrictions based on
# whether the derived work is a change to the software itself or if it
# just links with the software. In both cases the QPL is less restrictive
# than the GPL.
# It is my opinion then that the only real loss here is a few extra bytes
# in the license. The gain is that GPL compatibility is a no-brainer.
# Those who have asked for Troll Tech to GPL Qt ge what they asked for and
# the preferences, requests, and compatibility with everything free
# software but NOT GPL is still taken care of. In fact, I challenge
# people to find an existing software license which meets the DFSG that is
# incompatible with this proposal. ]
Limitations of Liability
In no event shall the authors of the Software or their employers be
liable for any lost revenue or profits or other direct, indirect,
special, incidental or consequential damages, even if they have been
advised of the possibility of such damages.
The Software and this license document are provided AS IS with NO
WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, INCLUDING THE WARRANTY OF DESIGN,
MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.
# [ This license has no warranty dammit! Remember that! hehehe ]
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