Subject: Re: "University-style" vs "Berkeley" licenses
From: Ray Jones <rjones@pobox.com>
Date: 27 Aug 1998 17:18:26 +0000

shap@eros.cis.upenn.edu writes:

> The problem with the ``go back and get the contract fixed'' position,
> ultimately, is that it inequitably shifts the burden of law and cost
> onto the licensee.  Suppose there is a bad term in a license.  As the
> licensee, I can do several things:
> 
>    1. Ignore it out of hand.
>    2. Check with counsel, get a legal opinion on whether the term is
>       valid, and act accordingly (the case at hand)
>    3. Renegotiate the license
>    4. Inform the licensor so that they will fix the license to enforce
>       the term that was a problem to me.

or 5. don't enter into the contract in the first place.

> Stepping up a level, there is a principle to consider: One who asserts
> control over something should shoulder the *costs* of the control
> along with the profits.  They should not be able to shift the
> financial burden of control to the parties controlled.

i agree with this sentiment, but it doesn't really apply in this case,
because the financial burden can only be "shifted" to the licensee if
the licensee is willing to take it on.  if they are not willing to
abide by the contract implied in use of the code, they shouldn't use
it.