Subject: Re: Contributor License Agreements
From: Roberta Cairney <roberta.cairney@cairneylawoffices.com>
Date: Mon, 14 May 2007 12:07:53 -0700 (PDT)

As a lawyer with a fair amount of open source
experience, I certainly agree.

Also, my clients have found that the Apache CLA is a
good place to start.  

An effective CLA is one of the strongest safeguards
for protecting the integrity of OS projects, over the
long run. 

--- DShofi@atmi.com wrote:

> I could not agree with you more, Chris.  I would
> think that any open 
> source project leader/maintainer would want to
> seriously consider adopting 
> some sort of CLA or contributor assignment agreement
> to confirm that the 
> project has the copyright rights necessary to
> distribute the open 
> source/free software.  The moderate level of
> administration does seem to 
> be worth the time and effort. 
> 
> David 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> "Christopher D. Coppola" <chris.coppola@rsmart.com> 
> 05/14/2007 02:24 PM
> 
> To
> Bruce Alspaugh <compulinkltd@gmail.com>
> cc
> License Discuss <license-discuss@opensource.org>
> Subject
> Re: Contributor License Agreements
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Bruce,
> 
> I am part of several open source communities where
> we chose to use CLA's. 
> I can affirm there is an administrative burden
> associated but I'll also 
> say that we think it's worthwhile. Using CLA's has
> helped us establish a 
> level of rigor around IP management in our
> communities that we've found to 
> be very reassuring. Some side benefits we've found
> is         that the 
> process of acquiring CLA's, and the education that
> goes into it has 
> produced communities that have a keen appreciation
> for the intellectual 
> property aspects of our efforts.
> 
> We chose a slight derivative of the Apache CLA.
> 
> /Chris.
> 
> 
> 
> On May 14, 2007, at 7:54 AM, Bruce Alspaugh wrote:
> 
> My company is considering releasing a software
> library under an
> open-source license.  We are contemplating requiring
> contributors to
> return a signed Contributor License Agreement
> similar to the one used by
> Sun[1], Apache[2], and many others.
> 
> The advantages we see with CLAs are to preserve the
> option of
> re-releasing under a different license, and to
> strengthen our ability to
> defend license violations if necessary.  The
> disadvantages we see are
> the added administrative burden of maintaining them,
> and reluctance on
> the part of contributors to sign them.
> 
> When are CLAs advisable for open source projects?
> Are there other CLA
> templates we should consider?
> 
> Sincerely,
> 
> Bruce Alspaugh, CTO
> CompuLink, Ltd.
> 409 Vandiver Drive #4-200
> Columbia, MO 65202-2213
> 
> [1] http://www.netbeans.org/about/legal/ca.html
> [2] http://www.apache.org/licenses/
> 
> 
> 
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