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From Sam Ruby <>
Subject Re: Scope of Apache license: what needs to be covered?
Date Tue, 28 Jun 2011 16:58:17 GMT
On Tue, Jun 28, 2011 at 12:27 PM, Rob Weir <> wrote:
> Let me state my assumptions, which might be incorrect, but I think it
> is worth being explicit, so my errors can be more easily corrected.
> Apache projects make releases.  These releases consist at least of
> tarballs containing source code. The contents of releases must be
> consist only of files under the Apache 2.0 license, or licenses which
> ASF has declared to be compatible with it.  This includes not only
> source code files, but also any bundled documentation.
> To ensure that the releases remain compatible with Apache 2.0, the
> repositories that are used to feed into the releases are also
> controlled.  So SVN can only be written by those who have signed the
> ICLA.  A wiki used for bundled product documentation is restricted to
> committers as well.  Presumably, to the extent we include translation
> files in our releases, these would need a similar level of attention,
> in terms of license and access control.
> Am I anywhere close in the above?
> If so, that leads me to two questions:
> 1) Are there any required license issues that we need to heed related
> to our website?  Assume for sake of argument that we're talking about
> web site content that never becomes part of a release.   So user
> guides, tutorials, as-is document templates that users could download,
> 3rd party plugins, additional 3rd party translation packs, user
> forums, etc.  Is there any requirement that these all be harmonized on
> Apache 2.0 and compatible licenses?  Or can we have a mix of licenses
> to that content, hosted by Apache in a sufficiently sand boxed
> environment?
> In other words, are the project's websites and all that we host at
> Apache required to be under an Apache-compatible license?  Or can we
> have copyleft "extras" that we host, with caveats, but do not build
> ourselves or include in our releases?

We generally don't host third party plugins, be they copyleft,
proprietary, or even under the Apache License.  One place that such
could be placed is:

> 2) If an existing independent group wishes to remain independent, and
> develop documentation or translations, or other similar modules, and
> then contribute it to the Apache OpenOffice project for inclusion in
> an official release, can this be done?   Assume that the work is made
> available to us under a compatible license, so it is (in that sense)
> allowable in a release.
> Is there any mechanism for an Apache project to routinely accept and
> release such modules?  Or would this require an SGA/Incubation
> proposal each time?  Or is there any streamlined way of doing this?

If there is an acceptable concrete proposal on how to deal with this
was presented to legal-discuss what the likely outcome of that
discussion would be is a narrowly crafted exception allowing this.

I do not see cc-by as a likely red flag.

I would like to see some evidence that project members are able to participate.

I would also like to see some evidence that project members endorse this.

Certainly, other topics may come up in the discussion, but those would
be areas I would seek to provide concrete answers to before posting to

> I'm not arguing that #1 or #2 is a good idea or not.  But some
> conversations seem to be leading to these directions, so I think it is
> worth clarifying exactly what is allowed.
> Thanks!
> -Rob

- Sam Ruby

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