Subject: AFL 3.0
From: "Lawrence Rosen" <>
Date: Wed, 19 Sep 2007 16:45:13 -0700

[Topic changed from "OSI Approval process"]

Matt, you are overanalyzing the GPL. I was told by an SFLC attorney during
the development of GPLv3 that there is no reason why AFL 3.0 is incompatible
with it. That opinion matters more to me than any of the speculation and
opinions on this list. But if you want to spend more time on this question
here, I guess nothing will stop you.

This started because someone asked for an academic license to use for his
purposes. I recommended AFL 3.0, which works for the purposes he specified,
regardless of the confusion that (still) exists here over the GPL. 

You asked the meaning of this phrase in AFL 3.0: ""any license of your
choice that does not contradict the terms and conditions" of this License.
That means that GPLv3 and many other licenses are compatible with it,
because they do not contradict the terms and conditions of AFL 3.0.

When did this become a venue to discuss licenses such as AFL 3.0 that are
already approved?


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Matthew Flaschen []
> Sent: Wednesday, September 19, 2007 3:07 PM
> To: License Discuss
> Subject: Re: OSI Approval process
> Lawrence Rosen wrote:
> >> AFL 3.0 does not seem to be compatible with either GPLv2 or GPLv3, due
> >> to the Attorney's Fees and External Deployment provisions (possibly
> >> others).  Is that your interpretation?
> >
> > Not at all. The attorney's fees provision reflects the fee-shifting
> > arrangement that is prevalent in many countries, including the UK.
> But for countries without that arrangement, it would seem to be an extra
> requirement beyond GPL.
> > It doesn't affect the GPL, any more than the indemnity provision of
> Apache
> > License 2.0 affects the GPL.
> Which indemnity provision are you referring to, and which version of the
> GPL?  According to the FSF (and Apache, though they don't seem to be as
> convinced) Apache 2.0 is not compatible with GPLv2.  It is compatible
> with GPLv3, partly because it allows clauses "Requiring indemnification
> of licensors and authors of that material by anyone who conveys the
> material (or modified versions of it) with contractual assumptions of
> liability to the recipient."  I don't see any equivalent clause for
> attorneys' fees or external deployment (excepting the linking grant for
> GNU Affero GPLv3, which does not apply to AFL).
> > As for the external deployment provision, it doesn't affect the AFL at
> all,
> > since distribution doesn't matter under that license.
> What exactly does "any license of your choice that does not contradict
> the terms and conditions" mean?  On the face, I would interpret it as
> meaning the license must have a superset of the restrictions of AFL and
> thus a subset of the permissions.
> Matt Flaschen