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Re: IBM Public License (again)

On Tue, May 25, 2004 at 12:10:51PM -0400, Raul Miller wrote:
> > On Fri, May 14, 2004 at 11:30:47AM +0100, MJ Ray wrote:
> > > Can you show me another DSFG-free licence that terminates depending on 
> > > action taken not involving the covered work?
> On Tue, May 25, 2004 at 01:11:27AM -0500, Branden Robinson wrote:
> > I am tempted to regard Raul's failure to rebut this point as dispositive.
> Yeah, I think I've pretty much exhausted everything I can think of to
> say in defense of that license.

Not all licenses are deserving of defense.  :)

> I wonder if the DFSG should be modified to include "doesn't terminate
> arbitrarily" as an explicit guideline (with text saying "a licence that
> terminates depending on action taken not involving the covered work is
> not free").

I'd be open to a DFSG #9 argument.

  License Must Not Contaminate Other Software

  The license must not place restrictions on other software that is
  distributed along with the licensed software. For example, the license
  must not insist that all other programs distributed on the same medium
  must be free software.[1]

This would be a "spirit", not "letter" argument.

A license that terminates if the licensee pets a cat is just as onerous
as one that requires that the licensee pet a cat[2].

> You can kind of get that from the other guidelines, but none seem to
> address this point directly.

No, none seem to hammer on it directly, because it's so outrageously

[1] http://www.debian.org/social_contract
[2] http://people.debian.org/~bap/dfsg-faq.html

G. Branden Robinson                |    The errors of great men are
Debian GNU/Linux                   |    venerable because they are more
branden@debian.org                 |    fruitful than the truths of little
http://people.debian.org/~branden/ |    men.         -- Friedrich Nietzsche

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