SourceForge and CreativeCommons

Evan Prodromou evan at
Fri Jun 4 10:14:54 EDT 2004

>>>>> "RM" == Robert MacLean <robert at> writes:

    RM> Hi, When registering a project that will be licenced under a
    RM> CC licence on SourceForge what should be choosen?  SourceForge
    RM> basically says you can go with an OSI approved licence
    RM> (, or public domain.  CC
    RM> is not listed as an OSI approved licence (should this worry
    RM> me?), and thus not on sourceforge

So, a couple of responses. I'm not a lawyer, this is not legal advice,
and I don't speak for Creative Commons.

First: if you're creating a -software- project on SourceForge, the
party line from Creative Commons is that you shouldn't use CC licenses
for software. Use one of the OSI-approved licenses instead. They're
specifically designed for distributing software, which the CC licenses
are not.*

Second: should you worry? Probably not. There are two CC licenses (the
Attribution 2.0 and the Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0) that would
probably be OSI-approved if they were submitted, which they haven't

It would be great if they were submitted for approval, for a number of
reasons, not least because of the problems you're having with
SourceForge. Other organizations use OSI-approval as a metric for
whether or not to include Open projects, too.

I have no idea why this hasn't happened yet, nor if it's going to
happen. Being interested in Creative Commons in 2004 is a lot like
being a Kremlin-watcher in 1979.


* I, personally, think that this is probably bad advice on the part of
Creative Commons, by the way. Despite Richard Stallman's
protestations, there is not a hard-and-fast line between software and
other forms of creativity, and the CC licenses should be able to deal
with any digital artifact.

Evan Prodromou <evan at>
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