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Re: Bug#639916: spread: license wackiness

On Wed, 31 Aug 2011 11:07:56 -0700 (PDT) Ken Arromdee wrote:

> On Wed, 31 Aug 2011, Francesco Poli wrote:
> >> "3. All advertising materials (including web pages) mentioning
> >>  features or use of this software, or software that uses this software,
> >>  must display the following acknowledgment: "This product uses software
> >>  developed by Spread Concepts LLC for use in the Spread toolkit. For
> >>  more information about Spread see http://www.spread.org"";
> > What you quoted looks like an Obnoxious Advertising Clause (OAC), a
> > GPL-incompatible restriction, but one that has traditionally been
> > accepted by the Debian Project as compliant with the DFSG (even though
> > recommended against), AFAICT.
> Unlike the original BSD 4 clause license this adds "or software that uses
> this software".

Mmmmh, another difference with the OAC, that I somewhat neglected
during my first reading...
It seems that I am tired in these days, or maybe I am getting old!   :-/

> If I interpret this broadly (all software that uses this software must
> display the sentence) it's non-free, since it imposes conditions on
> non-derived software that happens to use it.

On the grounds of DFSG#9, I suppose.

> Even if I interpret it
> narrowly (all advertising materials mentioning software that uses this
> software, must display the sentence) it imposes conditions on advertising
> for non-derived software.

It looks right.

> If I interpret the addition as meaning "derived works" the license is free
> but the wording is redundant.


In summary, what you pointed out is another reason why the clause is
unclear at best, non-free at worst.

 New GnuPG key, see the transition document!
..................................................... Francesco Poli .
 GnuPG key fpr == CA01 1147 9CD2 EFDF FB82  3925 3E1C 27E1 1F69 BFFE

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