Re: Alternatives to the Affero General Public License
Mark Rafn wrote:
I'd like to encourage you to think less along the lines "it's
currently a web server, so the license should cater to that case" and
more like "people should be able to make things out of this that I
haven't thought of, using methodologies yet undreamt". This can't
happen if you're prescribing things like network protocols, output
text, or specific behaviors.
If I can't turn it into a random-number service that runs on my phone
over some crazy bluetooth RPC mechanism, it ain't free.
I've been considering this, and have written a completely different
clause, with no mention of computer networks, HTTP, or anything such. It
might, however, be more difficult to enforce. I tried to write it in
such a way that giving somebody SSH access to your computer does not
necessitate providing source for all of your programs under this license
... that was the hardest part, and makes it read a bit kludgely.
I doubt that it is compliant with the Dissident Problem by your opinions
(< plural your), but I think that it's well within line of all of the
other requirements, and as an added bonus isn't tied to any particular
This would not be 2(d), but a new clause between 3 and 4.
If you provide to a person or persons a means of accessing an
interactive interface to the Program which does not include access to
the source code, object code or executable, you must also provide to
that person or those persons (henceforth called "Indirect Users") access
to the complete source code of the Program in one of the following ways:
a) Cause the Program to provide its source code in said interactive
interface upon the request of an Indirect User; or,
b) Make a means of immediate retrieval of the Program's source code
easily visible to all Indirect Users; or,
c) Provide a written offer, easily visible to all Indirect Users and
valid for at least three years, to give to any third party, for a charge
no more than your cost of physically performing source distribution, a
complete machine-readable copy of the corresponding source code, to be
distributed under the terms of Sections 1 and 2 above on a medium
customarily used for software interchange.
- Gregor Richards
PS: While it would be great for me if I could find some way to get a
license with some provision like this considered DFSG free (nothing is
impossible! ;) ), I would also like your opinions on whether you think
that this would cause any undue harm besides non-DFSG-compliance
(unnecessary trouble for innocent users, etc)