November 2019 License-Discuss & License-Review Summaries

In November 2019, topics on the License-Discuss mailing list included best practices for embedding Apache v2 software, a request for public comment on OpenChain, and processes for transitioning code to Public Domain, while the License-Review mailing list members did not hold any discussions over the course of the month. Once again, we would like to thank Amol Meshram, who has joined us here at the OSI to provide these monthly summaries of both the License-Discuss and License-Review mailing lists. If you have any feedback, please let us know.

1. How to embed Apache v2 software?

Antoine Thomas was seeking help on how to embed, re-distribute libraries (unmodified), license software and ship under the Open Software License (“OSL”).  To this Kevin P Fleming responded the developer shall distribute source code of software with its licenses, provide copyright notice and adhere to terms and conditions of ‘other’ included software. Florian Weimer is of the opinion that by shipping the entire input to the build system, license compliance will be easier. Lawrence Rosen thinks a developer can aggregate Apache V2 and OSL code, as only the derivative works of the OSL must be released under the OSL and Apache doesn’t care. Gustavo G. Mármol is of the opinion that a license should be interpreted based on the jurisdiction of the business entity.

2. Why will no-one sue GrSecurity for their blatant GPL violation (of GCC and the linux kernel)?

This email addressed to “RMS” was misdirected to the OSI list. The sender was directed to the Free Software Foundation.

3. Seeking public comments for the OpenChain specification ISO format version 2.1:

Gisi, Mark announced that drafting of OpenChain Specification version 2.1 will be conclude on December 10th, if anyone has suggestion please feel free to contact.

4. Becoming Public Domain After X Years:

Martin L is interested in knowing about licenses which allow the developer to release code after X years? David Woolley replies that validity of putting content in the public domain depends on the jurisdiction. John Cowan points out that under Copyright Act there is no specific provision for copyright abandonment, but, in general property can be abandoned by overt act. Thorsten Glaser said that some countries do not recognized the public domain and suggested using a permissive license after X years, with an example of “the first 10 years license A, then license B.” Antoine Thomas asks Thotsten Glaser whether a combination of CC-0 & BSL can be used in such cases? Richard Fontana compared the given situation with the ‘copyleft sunset’ provision of the copyleft-next 0.3.1 license, wherein the copyleft provision of the license ceases to apply 15 years after the distribution of the initial work.