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CDDL, OpenSolaris, Choice-of-venue and the star package ...

On Thu, Sep 08, 2005 at 02:06:12AM -0700, Steve Langasek wrote:
> On Thu, Sep 08, 2005 at 10:14:50AM +0200, Sven Luther wrote:
> > On Wed, Sep 07, 2005 at 02:48:15PM -0700, Steve Langasek wrote:
> > > On Wed, Sep 07, 2005 at 10:47:59PM +1000, Paul TBBle Hampson wrote:
> > > > > These two do not appear to be compatible (unless you think a license
> > > > > can be "free" with a venue choice that you do not consider "sane"), so
> > > > > I must have misunderstood one of them. Could you elaborate, please?
> > > > If we replace "sane" with "enforcable" (which is what I think the OP was
> > > > getting at) then they are in fact compatible. A license does not become
> > > > non-free if it contains unenforcable components, unless it contains a component
> > > > that specifies that any unenforcable clause voids the whole license.
> > > But choice-of-venue clauses, at least in contracts, *are* enforceable in
> > > some significant jurisdictions -- like the one which hosts
> > > ftp-master.debian.org.
> > > So their freeness is still an issue.
> > I get the feeling that it is not the freeness of them which is an issue, they
> > don't really make the software more or less free after all, since they enter
> > in account only if the licence is broken
> No, they enter into consideration *whenever the copyright holder decides
> to sue you*.  There have even been cases of one-time Linux kernel
> contributors flipping out and suing members of the community -- filing
> suit, of course, in their own home jurisdiction, where it's cheap for
> them to flood the courts with SLAPP filings.  Do we really think it's a
> good idea to approve of giving copyright holders extra leverage for such
> lawsuits in their license, and just hope that none of these copyrights
> ever wind up in the hands of a hostile entity?
> > , and we don't really can consider freeness definitions based on more
> > or less broken local juridictions.
> In the past, when we have discussed broken jurisdictions, it has been in
> the context of licenses which don't go far enough to spell out freedoms
> that are taken for granted.  When we talk about choice of venue clauses,
> however, this is a clause which has been actively included in the
> license and which is (IMHO) non-free in intent.  I don't think we should
> accept such licenses as free just because they don't *succeed* in being
> non-free in all jurisdictions.

Notice that we already accepted a CDDLed program in debian, namely the star
packages which comes with this clause :


    This License represents the complete agreement concerning subject
    matter hereof.  If any provision of this License is held to be
    unenforceable, such provision shall be reformed only to the extent
    necessary to make it enforceable.  This License shall be governed
    by the law of the jurisdiction specified in a notice contained
    within the Original Software (except to the extent applicable law,
    if any, provides otherwise), excluding such jurisdiction's
    conflict-of-law provisions.  Any litigation relating to this
    License shall be subject to the jurisdiction of the courts located
    in the jurisdiction and venue specified in a notice contained
    within the Original Software, with the losing party responsible
    for costs, including, without limitation, court costs and
    reasonable attorneys' fees and expenses.  The application of the
    United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale
    of Goods is expressly excluded.  Any law or regulation which
    provides that the language of a contract shall be construed
    against the drafter shall not apply to this License.  You agree
    that You alone are responsible for compliance with the United
    States export administration regulations (and the export control
    laws and regulation of any other countries) when You use,
    distribute or otherwise make available any Covered Software.

So, i wonder why it was accepted, if it was non-free. But maybe we just passed
it up silently and didn't notice ? Who was the ftp-master responsible for
letting this one enter the archive, and can he comment on this ?


Sven Luther  

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