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Python licensing

The following are brief quotes.  Please read
the complete versions of these articles on
Python licensing as well as others by
Tim Peters and Guido van Rossum in say

A key point that must be said, CNRI has not
to my knowledge made any public statements
at all about Python licensing.  The
following quotes, except for the analysis
of who owns the copyright, are essentially
hypothetical speculations.  No one knows
or can speak for what CNRI believes.  It
might be in a prospective distributor's
interest to ask CNRI and find out for
certain, hopefully in a reply that can be
made public.

The situation is simply complicated.  Do
not form an opinion over any one posting,
read everything Guido van Rossum and Tim
Peters have said.

 From: "Tim Peters" <tim_one@email.msn.com>
 To: <python-list@python.org>
 Subject: RE: Questions for Tim Peters
 Date: Thu, 3 Aug 2000 02:12:02 -0400
 Message-ID: <LNBBLJKPBEHFEDALKOLCKELKGNAA.tim_one@email.msn.com>
 Newsgroups: comp.lang.python

[Much snipped, read the entire article.
 Again, what CNRI actually believes is unknown.]

    Ah, there's more here than meets the eye.
    CWI gave Guido certain broad rights to
    Python when Guido left CWI, and Guido
    signed those rights over to CNRI.  AFAIK,
    those documents are not publicly
    available, and I only know about them
    because Guido happened to tell me the 
    other day.  Guido has no doubts
    whatsoever about CNRI's legal right
    to license Python however they please,
    and neither does his legal counsel.  The
    only thing in dispute here is whether
    *other* parties can rely on what the CWI
    license appears to tell them.  At least
    three different lawyers so far had at
    least three different opinions about that.
    Beats me.

From: "Tim Peters" <tim_one@email.msn.com>
 To: <python-list@python.org>, "Guido van Rossum" <guido@python.org>
 Subject: RE: Questions for Guido van Rossum (Was: ...Tim Peters)
 Date: Sat, 5 Aug 2000 22:25:23 -0400
 Message-ID: <LNBBLJKPBEHFEDALKOLCKEDCGOAA.tim_one@email.msn.com>
 Newsgroups: comp.lang.python

[Much snipped, read the entire article.
 Again, what CNRI actually believes is unknown.
 Tim Peters is responding to a speculative
 question from me with more speculation.
 To repeat, no one knows or can say what
 CNRI believes.]

    > I would hope that the final agreement
    > between CNRI and BeOpen would include a
    > clear indication one way or another
    > whether the purported license of
    > Python 1.5.2 and 1.6a2 is valid in the
    > eyes of CNRI.  After all, 1.6 is not
    > released yet, so many distributors will
    > be including 1.5.2 for some time.

    Well, I can't argue against you on this!  
    If CNRI claims they released software
    without a valid license, the legality of
    using 1.5.2 and 1.6a2 is muddy (indeed,
    CNRI may not even agree 1.6a2 was "a
    release" in the sense of 1.5.2).  Since
    it seems very unlikely they'll agree to
    say that the CWI license is valid,
    perhaps they could be persuaded to
    promise not to press any claims based
    on the presumed invalidity of the
    CWI license excepting claims against
    BeOpen PythonLabs.  I've copied my bosses
    on this, but, again, it has to be taken
    up with CNRI directly.  

Sincerely yours,
Henry Jones

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