[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: request-tracker3: license shadiness

Don Armstrong wrote:
> On Thu, 10 Jun 2004, Josh Triplett wrote:
>>Brian Thomas Sniffen wrote:
>>>Michael Poole <mdpoole@troilus.org> writes:
>>>># Unless otherwise specified, all modifications, corrections or
>>>># extensions to this work which alter its source code become the
>>>># property of Best Practical Solutions, LLC when submitted for
>>>># inclusion in the work.
>>>This is a GPL-incompatible restriction.  It is also non-free.  Best
>>>Practical Solutions has not transfered its copyrights to *me*.
>>>They've given me a license under the GPL.  That's all they can assume
>>>when I send them a patch for inclusion.
>>Is it still non-free even though you are not required to submit patches
>>to them for inclusion? 
> The problem here is that this clause could plausibly take effect if a
> third party submits the patch to Best Practical Solutions, LLC.

Good point, I hadn't considered that possibility.  If a third party can
submit modifications and (attempt to) transfer their copyright (even if
such attempted transfer is invalid under the laws of a given
jurisdiction), the license is clearly non-free.

> Licenses that require the assignment of copyrights to the author of a
> work are clearly not free. I'm fairly comfortable with considering
> clauses that do assignment without the expressed approval of the
> author of the patch non-free as well.

In that case, would you consider the clause Free if it said "when the
author of such alterations submits them for inclusion in the work"?
That would make such assignment entirely voluntary.

- Josh Triplett

Reply to: