SourceForge and CreativeCommons

Greg London email at
Fri Jun 4 11:14:35 EDT 2004

Evan Prodromou said:
>>>>>> "RM" == Robert MacLean <robert at> writes:
>     RM> SourceForge basically says you can go with an OSI approved licence

> 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
> been.

I don't think attribution would meet the OSD.

I vaguely recall a situation a while back where
someone wanted to license their web software
under an OSI license with the requirement that
all websites that use their software keep intact
a link to the author's website. If you use their
software to host your website, you'd end up with
a link on your page somewhere that pointed back
to their page. That would fit CC-Attribution in
its definition of "reasonable to the medium",
I think.

The idea was shot down. And the software had to
drop the attribution requirement to get
"OSI-Certified" on their distribution.

This was one of the reasons I would prefer to
see attribution "off" by default, and require
the author to do something extra to require
attribution, such as listing an attribution
phrase the way the GNU-FDL does invariant sections.

I don't see a need to use CC licenses to license
software. there are plenty of OSI approved licenses
already (50 at last count). More licenses won't
help the situation any.

If you want ShareAlike-style licensing on software,
use the GNU-GPL. It has some clauses that are
exclusive to the intellectual property niche that
software inhabits, namely that software can be

Software is the only copyrightable work that can
also be patented. so there are some particular
oddities involved when licensing software.

Unless ShareAlike handles patent restrictions,
you're better off with GNU-GPL.

"Impatient Perl" => Perl geek in about a week.
Available in GNU-FDL, HTML, PDF, and paperback.

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