Subject: Re: Questions about EULA with Excluded Licenses clause
From: superm40@comcast.net (Matthew Seth Flaschen)
Date: Thu, 23 Jun 2005 20:57:06 +0000

> I understand that.  I don't think the combination would violate the
> LGPL.  I think it might violate the EULA because the LGPL requires that
> the source for the LGPLed library be included and licensed under the
> LGPL when distributing a "derivative work that uses the library".  If
> the LGPLed library is considered a "part of" the derivative work for the
> purposes of the EULA, I'm concerned that MS could successfully argue
> that having it covered by the LGPL is a violation.  Is that a valid
> concern or am I being too paranoid? :-)
   

Too paranoid.  The license that requires you to include the LGPLed library is the license
for the original library.  That license doesn't cover the MS software.  In addition,
the EULA doesn't cover the original library.  It only covers the combination.  Therefore,
it has no say about the source code clause of the LGPL.

> I think the idea would be to distribute the derivative work under a non-
> Excluded License.  The EULA seems to give explicit permission to do that
> when it says, "You may redistribute the Solution and any modifications
> you make to it, in whole or in part, on a stand alone basis or as part
> of your own products or services."  Am I missing something?

It gives you permission to distribute the software.  It doesn't give you permission
to license it under terms of your choice.  Not only that, it doesn't give you a license
to distribute it under ANY particular terms.  I.E. It does not give permission to allow
others to redistribute.  In fact, it doesn't even specifically let you redistribute
under the EULA terms.  This violates #2 and #3 of the Definition.  Also, upon further
analysis, the license termination clause has serious issues.  It says, in effect, that
if you don't agree to license your "Feedback" to Microsoft and let them invade your
privacy(Consent to use of data), you have no rights under the license.  However, taking
away those rights violates #1 of the Definition, which says the license can not restrict
any party.  
       

> Thanks.  Not sure how I missed that...
> 

Don't worry.  That's what they intended.

> > Does the software actually provide complete source code?  If not, it
> > fails #2.
> 
> Good question. :-)  I don't know the answer.
  > 

When you find out, tell me.

As for whether it is OSI-compliant, I've addressed that issue some more above.  In addition,
at the top of the license, it says you must obey "terms of any guidelines (if any) specified
in the electronic or printed documentation comprising part of the Solution."  Those
undoubtedly are restrictions on fields of endevour, and because they are open-ended
could violate any of the other points, such as #8 or #10.  I strongly recommend avoiding
the use of this product.  It is not Open Source, is ambiguous, and grants MS far too
much power.  Do whatever you can to avoid it.

-Matt Flaschen