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Re: Fwd: figlet license change from Artistic to Clarified Artistic or Artistic 2.0?

On Tue, Nov 02, 2004 at 10:24:29PM -0500, John Cowan wrote:
> > Could you give an example of something that would "contradict the AFL",
> > that isn't allowed?  (If I'm allowed to distribute the work under the X11
> > license, then it seems like anything is allowed, except for obvious things
> > like removing the author's name.)
> That's the whole idea.  It's a "copycenter" license: take the code
> down to the copy center and make as many copies (or derivatives)
> as you want.

You were previously talking about "contradicting the AFL", though.  Are
there actually any cases of this, or is it a practically null set?

> You should rather ask: what is there about any statement that makes
> it irrevocable?  The fact that it forms part of a valid contract.
> Contracts *are* statements of intent by one party that the other can
> enforce.  If I say, "I'm going to give you a million dollars", and
> then say "No I'm not", I've revoked my promise, but because there is
> no contract you cannot enforce this promise.

This isn't the same as you claiming you'll give me something, not doing
so and me suing for it; there's nothing I need to enforce, you're just
giving up your right for me to not distribute your work.  It's you (the
licensor) that's doing the enforcing, here: you've granted me permission
to do something normally prohibited by copyright law.

Turn it around: what is there about your license that might make it
revocable?  Is there anything in the law that suggests this, that one
could point the FSF at: "this looks like a problem; is it?"  Given the
vague "this might be a problem, but I don't really know", it's hard to
even formulate a decent question.  (If we had one, we could try asking
the FSF--asking Eben Moglen directly isn't the right thing to do,
anyway--but this is still so vague I wouldn't know what to ask.)

Glenn Maynard

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