[cc-licenses] open source non commercial license
tiemann at redhat.com
Mon Feb 5 14:42:51 EST 2007
On Mon, 2007-02-05 at 19:30 +0000, Emerson Clarke wrote:
> > > Thanks, i was actually looking at the microsoft licenses this morning.
> > > But as you suggested, they do not go down well with the open source
> > > community.
> > The problem with the Microsoft licenses is not that they come from
> > Microsoft. It's that Microsoft has not submitted the licenses to the
> > Open Source Initiative's license approval process, so they have not be
> > discussed, so they cannot be approved by the OSI board, and therefore
> > they are not OSI-approved licenses. If and when Microsoft submits a
> > license to the process, they will get the same fair hearing that any
> > other submission would receive, and the invitation to do so remains
> > open. Until then, the open source community (or at least this open
> > source community member) will take a wait-and-see approach.
> Ok, thats interesting.
> I guess there are no existing similarly constructed shared source
> licences then ?
I don't know. The first Shared Source license was so obviously not open
source that there was no point in Microsoft submitting it, and if they
did, the community could have trivially pointed out all the ways that it
violated the Open Source Definition. At least of the new Microsoft
licenses appears to satisfy the OSD, but again, without discussion, we
cannot judge, and we cannot discuss until Microsoft submits, which they
> Do you think that such a shared source license which forced its
> licensing restrictions to be upheld in derivative works like the GPL
> does would be doomed from the outset though.
I cannot make a prediction without considering a concrete license
example. Microsoft has chosen to cover such a wide range of licenses
with the term Shared Source that it is meaningless as a starting point
for a specific conversation.
> If one of my goals is to have adoption in the open source community
> then i may as well confront the issue. In your opinion, are open
> source licenses at such a point where developers face a "use license
> X, or sink" situation, and is there no way to weave in a new style of
> license with a new definition of non commercial ?
You make it sound like the open source community can force you to fail.
They cannot. They, like any other free market, vote with their feet.
The open source community, by definition, rejects licenses that are not
OSI-approved, and thus if you want to get their cooperation (or get
their commercial business), you need to start with a license that has
been approved. I will say that long ago the open source community
rejected the notion that paying a royalty for any use of software is
consistent with open source, so no amount of "but we're only asking
commercial users to pay" is going to get you anywhere.
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