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Re: IBM Public License (again)

MJ Ray wrote:
> On 2004-05-13 16:54:36 +0100 Raul Miller <moth@debian.org> wrote:
>> For example, if IBM begins initiates some patent litigation, it looks
>> like
>> the license still stands -- even if that litigation winds up nullifying
>> the patent in question. [...]
> What if you want to enforce some other patent applicable to software
> against IBM? What if IBM initiates against you and you want to use such
> a patent in a counterclaim?
> Why should this software's licence, not directly involved in the cases
> above, terminate?

This software's license doesn't terminate.  The patent license from all
of the software's contributors not to sue you over patents terminates.

A license that gives no indication about patents at all would give you
fewer rights than this license, because a license with no indication
about patents allows any patent-holding contributor to sue you over your
use of the software, while this license only allows them to do so if you
have sued them over patents.  It seems that if a license which implies
through omission that "we can sue you over patents at any time" can be
Free, then a license which explicitly says "we can't sue you unless you
sue us" could also be Free, since it grants more rights, not less.

Given that our standard position on patents is to ignore them unless a
particular patent holder is threatening us with lawsuits, I see no
reason why we shouldn't apply the same policy here.

- Josh Triplett

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