There seems to be some confusion over the PHP License.
We had this bug report into a PEAR project which outlines that Debian cannot include any projects that fall under the PHP License.
You will find details of the reason behind it here:
You have a PHP add-on package (any php script/"app"/thing, not PHP
itself) and it's licensed only under the standard PHP license. That
license, up to the 3.x which is actually out, is not really usable
for anything else than PHP itself. I've mailed our -legal list about
that and got only one response, which basically supported my view on
this. Basically this license talks only about PHP, the PHP Group,
and includes Zend Engine, so its not applicable to anything else.
And even worse, older versions include the nice ad-clause.
One good solution here is to suggest a license change to your
upstream, as they clearly wanted a free one. LGPL or BSD seems to be
what they want
After a quick search, I quickly found that this isn't an isolated case...
Judging by the email to legal sent almost a decade ago this situation is in need of a review...
I can't understand this line of thought in this context:
GPL enforces many restrictions on what can and cannot be done with
the licensed code. The PHP developers decided to release PHP under a
much more loose license (Apache-style), to help PHP become as
popular as possible.
I also read that Rasmus Lerdorf issued a statement which said that the PHP license is pretty much identical to the Apache license.
I've also discovered that this is not the first instance that this issue has been discussed:
All this has raised some questions:
1. Is 'The PHP License, version 3.01' an Open Source license, certified by the Open Source Initiative? Their website only lists 'PHP License 3.0 (PHP-3.0)'.
2. When was 'The PHP License, version 3.01' released?
3. Can 'The PHP License, version 3.01' be used for anything other than PHP itself?
4. Are there any legal implications of changing a project from 'The PHP License, version 3.01' to LGPL or BSD?
5. Is the PHP license clear enough to ensure that it is correctly applied to extensions?
6. Why would the (Apache-style) PHP License be listed by Debian as a 'serious violation' yet the Apache license is not?