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Re: Clarification regarding PHP License and DFSG status

On Mon, 26 Dec 2005 23:59:27 -0800 Don Armstrong wrote:

> On Mon, 26 Dec 2005, Francesco Poli wrote:
> > On Sat, 24 Dec 2005 23:08:09 -0500 Glenn Maynard wrote:
> > > (FYI, Don wasn't claiming either of these. He was explaining how
> > > the restriction being called non-free could be tied to the DFSG;
> > > that's not the same as claiming it's non-free *due* to that.)
> > 
> > Don's statement seemed (at least to me) in agreement with my claims.
> > 
> > Don, could you clarify?
> > Apologies in advance, should I find out I misunderstood your words.
> I just provided the basis for your claim; I personally haven't decided
> myself whether or not this clause is DFSG Free or not. It is quite
> certainly on the border.[1]

Ah, OK.
I thought you were more decided than you actually are: I apologize.

> That being said, I see no reason why any upstream would ever need such
> a phrase in their license.

To generate debian-legal headscratching?  ;-)

> For the two cases which we care about:
> 1: In the case of works that are not PHP or obviously derived works of
> PHP, such a clause is most likely non-free, as it has nothing to do
> with requiring a namechange at all.

That's one of the points I'm trying to gain consensus on.
You seem to agree with me.

> 2: In the case of PHP itself, derived works that would be confusingly
> similar to PHP should be enjoined by trademark law, not copyright.
> [Not surprisingly, it is easily conceivable that Debian itself is
> falling afoul of this clause by distributing a derivative works of PHP
> which contain 'php'[2].]

Most probably trademark law is more suitable for that, yes.

> 1: On cases like this, I'd strongly suggest working with upstream to
> change the license while keeping the work in question in the archive.

That's exactly what I'm suggesting.
I think the license is non-free: as a consequence upstream should be
persuaded to change it. In the meanwhile, the work can be kept in the
archive for some time.

> 2: Although, I suppose the nitpickers out there will notice that the
> licence specifies 'PHP', not 'php'... ;-)

I, as a nitpicker, have already noticed that!  :)

    :-(   This Universe is buggy! Where's the Creator's BTS?   ;-)
  Francesco Poli                             GnuPG Key ID = DD6DFCF4
 Key fingerprint = C979 F34B 27CE 5CD8 DC12  31B5 78F4 279B DD6D FCF4

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