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Re: [TSVN] To GPL or not to GPL

From: Toby Johnson <toby_at_etjohnson.us>
Date: 2005-08-19 06:14:40 CEST

Simon Large wrote:

> Some time ago there was talk about changing our license to something
> other than GPL, and having spent a lot of time looking at the
> restrictions it places, and reading Richard Stallman's rants about all
> non-free software being unethical, I am getting pretty sick of it
> myself. I saw this link and decided he had lost the plot:
> http://www.stallman.org/harry-potter.html

I don't see what is to be gained by making decisions on the licensing of
software based on the actions of someone who happens to support one of
the licenses under consideration.

> In fact, if we were to observe the GPL conditions strictly, we could
> not release TSVN at all because most of the other component licenses
> are (according to RMS) incompatible with GPL. For example GPL will not
> allow you to include a component which has an additional requirement
> which is not in the GPL (such as having to display a notice like
> "includes software developed by CollabNet").
> http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-faq.html#OrigBSD

That says that the license is "incompatible" but that doesn't mean TSVN
itself can't be released under the GPL. However, it may be necessary to
include a "special case" in the TSVN license allowing others to link to
a library with an "incompatible" license. This is explained here:
<http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-faq.html#GPLIncompatibleLibs>

Also, the developer of a piece of software which is released under the
GPL is not himself (or themselves) actually bound by the GPL; it is a
license *from* the developer *to* others:
<http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-faq.html#DeveloperViolate>

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Received on Fri Aug 19 06:15:08 2005

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