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Re: Qt license okay?

On Thu, Jan 14, 1999 at 02:12:44PM -0500, Peter S Galbraith wrote:
> I convinced a friend to release his software under a free
> license, but he wanted protection in case he later decide to
> commercialize a version of his software.  I suggested the Qt
> license which was at version 0.92 at the time (and still is).

The Qt 0.92 license still suffers from the patch clause. While people
do consider this `free', we also consider it pretty painful (ie, it
seems to rule out CVS trees, it /does/ rule out forking, and so on).

Also, because of the patch clause, it isn't GPL compatible. This may
or may not matter to you -- it will stop you from using GPLed libraries
like libreadline, but it will also stop people from doing a GPL fork
(or submitting GPLed patches) which might be what you want.

It might be worth your while looking at the Mozilla Public License,
which is targetted at a similar situation (an application that
people want to be able to make proprietry releases for). It's also
available in a boilerplate form so it should be easy to apply to
your own software. I think. Check http://www.mozilla.org/NPL/
> Is it [the QPL] considered DFSG-compliant?

At the moment, yes. There are questions about whether we'd like to
continue considering patch clauses free, however. There's also questions
about exactly what final form the QPL will take.

>      b. When modifications to the Software are released under this
>      license, a non-exclusive right is granted to the initial developer
>      of the Software to distribute your modification in future versions
>      of the Software provided such versions remain available under
>      these terms in addition to any other license(s).

What is the benefit of this for you, btw?

For Qt, it lets Troll Tech release a version for money that proprietry
people can link to (since proprietry people *can't* link to a QPLed
version, in much the same way as they couldn't link to a GPLed version),
but since it's only people using your product, how will other license
terms than these benefit them?

(ie, why would people buy a proprietry version, when they're *guaranteed*
they can download a free version by the above clause? Assuming you accept
some outside patches, that is)



Anthony Towns <aj@humbug.org.au> <http://azure.humbug.org.au/~aj/>
I don't speak for anyone save myself. PGP encrypted mail preferred.

``Like the ski resort of girls looking for husbands and husbands looking
  for girls, the situation is not as symmetrical as it might seem.''

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