Subject: Re: [Fwd: FW: For Approval: Generic Attribution Provision]
From: Rick Moen <>
Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2007 11:52:06 -0800

Quoting Ben Tilly (

[As a reminder:  We are speaking in this subthread of the MuleSource
"Exhibit B" badgeware licence -- as opposed to any other licences
recently discussed.]

> However since you've brought it up and have avoided my key point, I'll
> make it.  Copyleft forbids nothing.  However its effect causes many
> people to not want to use GPLed software.  Furthermore the strength of
> this distaste tends to vary according to which use people are
> attempting to make of the software.  Yet that fact emphatically does
> *not* violate OSD #6.

You are here, perhaps deliberately, reading OSD#6 contrary to the
meaning intended by its authors.  Copylefting a codebase puts no limit
on _usage_, in that intended sense.  E.g., they have not dictated what
the derivative work may do and what it may display in order to create
two classes of users.

> The disagreement lies with the point that you haven't yet addressed.
> Which is whether they've gone so far doing this that they are
> violating OSD #6.  In my opinion, they have not.

They have interfered with _usage_ in a way that creates two classes of
users, which is precisely what OSD #6 aims to delimit as outside the 
definition of open source.

> I'm curious how you draw a distinction on this particular ground
> between, say, Sleepycat and SocialText.

Sleepcat issues code instances under your choice of an open source
licence and a proprietary one, depending on whose terms you find more
palatable.  Socialtext offers code instances under a proprietary licence
(Socialtext Public Licence 1.0.0) or (in theory, for the sake of
discussion) a different "commercial" proprietary licence.

OSI doesn't care if, in addition to open source code instances, you also
offer separate proprietary instances.  It cares only about the open
source side of your affairs.

OSI also isn't in the business of ensuring that your customers feel well
treated.  It's just about code and licensing, licensing and code -- the
right to fork, the right to create and redistribute derivative works
under the same terms, the right to use code for any purpose without fee
or additional permissions.