[cc-licenses] open source non commercial license
broonie at gmail.com
Tue Feb 6 04:20:48 EST 2007
On 2/6/07, Emerson Clarke <emerson.clarke at gmail.com> wrote:
> > The usual approach in that situation is to do as Rob suggested and dual
> > license the software under both the GPL and a proprietary license. QT is
> > prominent example of this approach.
> Mark, perhaps im missing something but doesnt that mean that companies
> are still free to use the software in circumstances where they are not
> distributing it ?
Absolutely, yes. Like I said, this doesn't completely stop commercial use,
just makes it more difficult. It does stop people making a proprietary
version of the software and this is the particular use case that most people
using a dual license are concerned about.
As i mentioned before, i think that 90% of commercial software is
> never made public. And my understanding of existing open source
> licenses like the GPL is that they only place restrictions on software
> which is actually distributed to the public.
Yes. Due to the no discrimination against fields of endeavor restriction in
the OSD it's not possible to prevent commercial use entirely.
Or does the dual license somehow revoke the existing commercial
> conditions in the GPL ?
There are no restrictions on commercial use or distribution in the GPL
(although it does make it much harder to make any money from commercial
For instance, if i were a large government
> consulting firm hired to develop a piece of software worth millions of
> dollars for the government, there would be nothing to stop me from
> using QT internally as the basis for this implementation.
In that particular case I'm not entirely sure if they'd be able to do that:
when the commercial firm gives the software to the government that may well
be distribution. A clear example would be something like software developed
in house to control a production line where the software is never given to
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