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Re: QPL: non-free?

On Tue, Aug 20, 2002 at 07:12:13PM -0500, Branden Robinson <branden@debian.org> wrote...
> > Also, I don't much like this these terms of the QPL,, but I can't
> > actually find anything in DFSG they violate:
> >  (3)b. When modifications to the Software are released under this
> >        license, a non-exclusive royalty-free 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)
> >        of the initial developer.
> IMO, it is against the spirit of Free Software to require the assignment
> of your intellectual property rights in anything for the freedom to
> modify someone else's intellectual property.

It is mostly redundant. The paragraph basically says, that the initial
developer has the right the merge any patches that are under the same
licence. It doesn't request any "assignment" of some kind of IP right,
just to licence the stuff to the developer. The GPL for example requires
you to licence your changes under the GPL.
The tricky part are the last two rows. They grant the initial developer
(and only him) the right to use the modifications under some other licence
he has separately licenced the application under (which he can do freely
as long as he has the copyright to all the code and all other code is
licenced under this paragraph).
I'd also feel this as being little "dirty" but it is still FSFish-free
than the BSD-style licences, because it only allows the initial developer
to turn the modification into a proprietary product, while the BSD
licences allow anybody to do so.

The QPL certainly is not GPL-compatible, but is as certainly DFSG-free.

	Oliver M. Bolzer

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