Subject: Re: For Approval: Microsoft Permissive License
From: Rick Moen <>
Date: Sat, 29 Sep 2007 11:27:22 -0700

Quoting David Woolley (

> However, the general public will make a better guess of the meaning of 
> Permissive, and the term Academic is used by proprietary software 
> vendors to imply a field of endeavour restriction on licences that do 
> not permit redistribution.  I would think Academic would be unsafe on 
> any open source licence from Microsoft, as they are already strongly in 
> to discounted "academic" proprietary licensing.

You seem to be discussing the usual use of that term _by_ Microsoft in
their licensing of products to academia, which is a valid point.

FWIW, and just for clarity's sake, my recollection is that in the
_broader_ world, "academic licensing" has traditionally referred to
something different:  proprietary licensing _by_ academia that expressly
permits and encourages redistribution and non-commercial usage, but
reserves commercial rights.  A university trust then serves as a
commercial licensing authority to separately rent out those reserved
rights to interested commercial users.

The BSD and MIT licences are notable (and successful) on account of
being exceptions to the prevailing "academic" regime.