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Re: The APSL and Export Controls

Chip Salzenberg <chip@perlsupport.com> wrote:
> More generally, though, the OSD is like any formal standard -- besides
> the legalistic meeting of requirements, there are issues of Quality Of
> Implementation.

Sure, but that's only good for the blatantly obvious issues.  There's
another class of subtler issues (for example where the true impact of
a clause doesn't become apparent till after some strategic change).

The goal debian tries to shoot for is, basically:  you can take our
stuff and use it without having to research copyright issues, unless
you want to do something that mixes in some new copyright combination.
[For example: you can continue to sell your cdrom inventory, you can
continue to get bugfixes for the programs you're using, if you need to
add a significant feature you're allowed to do that.]

OSD has a more abstract job (since you're ruling on licenses instead
of software), but it seems like putting yourself in the shoes of people
[developers, administrators, cdrom publishers, etc..]  who would have to
rely on the OSD software would be a good mental excercise:  Each has to
invest significant resources in a piece of software before it becomes
important, and it's at that point where the "freeness" of the license
becomes important.

And the basic issue here is: any kind of revocation clause puts that
kind of implicit guarantee at risk.  [And I think it would be sad if
OSD certification didn't provide this sort of implicit promise.]


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