Subject: Re: Silly question: are usage restrictions covered by the OSD?
From: Rick Moen <>
Date: Sat, 18 Oct 2003 04:52:03 -0700

Quoting Arnoud Engelfriet (

> Well, if the usage is normally reserved to the copyright holder, 
> an open source license could grant that right to all users. I
> don't think that has anything to do with "discrimination".

Isn't the right to use software implied by lawful receipt?

> Why not simply say "The license shall not restrict any form
> of usage of the software, as long as such usage does not
> involve distribution of the software to third parties"?
> That seems to correspond quite nicely to the FSF's freedom zero
> ("to use the program, for any purpose").

I would have thought it understood implicitly that redistribution is not
an instance of what is meant by _usage_, in this context.  The OSD isn't
code for a von Neumann machine:  People are supposed to use their heads 
about what its phrases mean.

> It has the side-effect that the ASP loophole is then officially
> approved and cannot be closed.

Hmm.  It's not clear to me that the OSI Board desires to exclude
licences extending copyleft provisions to situations that lack code
distribution -- but they might.  Such a licence is certainly on the
militant end of the spectrum, but clearly conveys the rights to use and
to fork the codebase.

Cheers,           find / -user your -name base -print | xargs chown us:us
Rick Moen
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