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Re: Licence opinion

On Tue, Jul 22, 2003 at 07:20:31PM +0100, Scott James Remnant wrote:
> If anyone's got a free moment or two, could they pass opinion on the
> following as a licence.  I'm especially interested in how it'd interact
> with other licences, esp. the GPL.
> # This work may be modified and distributed under any terms, licence
> # or agreement that meets all the conditions set out in the
> # Debian Free Software Guidelines (DFSG) as published at
> # <URL: http://www.debian.org/social_contract#guidelines>.
> #
> # At all times the original copyright message(s) and this freedom of
> # licence must be preserved, or where only a part of this work is
> # distributed, copied into that part to apply only to that part.

That's a GPL-incompatible variant on the MIT/X11 license, in disguise.

Free-est license wins from a practical viewpoint, so the "do whatever
you want" MIT/X11 license is appropriate - except for this clause:

> # At all times ... this freedom of
> # licence must be preserved

Which is an additional restriction over the GPL, and is therefore not
compatible with it.

In addition, the DFSG is hugely subject to interpretation - it was
never designed for use in this fashion - and so the license should be
considered ambiguous in every case which has engendered debate on this
list (and probably some others too).

I think it's a pretty silly license. I would ask upstream to change to
a simple MIT/X11.

  .''`.  ** Debian GNU/Linux ** | Andrew Suffield
 : :' :  http://www.debian.org/ |
 `. `'                          |
   `-             -><-          |

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