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From Niclas Hedhman <>
Subject Re: Optional modules with GPL dependencies (was: What to include/exclude in code donation to Apache)
Date Sun, 06 Nov 2016 02:16:37 GMT
my point is simply; Everyone say they understand, but then make comments
that indicates that they don't.

Like (not the only example),

On Sun, Nov 6, 2016 at 3:20 AM, Wade Chandler <>
> You would have to get specific here. nb-javac has a license now. It is
> GPL+CPE, so it specifically, and how that would legally and technically
> work per what is in the Apache legal "resolved" document, is a straight
> line IMO; nothing to guess about other than implementation. The same would
> be the case with any OpenJDK API ATM.

"IMO" is not good enough. The "resolved" page is a guide, and not a rule
book. It is a quick look up for *identical* usecases, not to be interpreted
by laymen in *similar* ones.
Unless I am blind, this usecase is not examined and explained, hence Legal
input is strongly recommended. Licensing are not debatable items and not
subject to layman's opinion what should be within our licensing principles
or not. Even Legal expertise will disagree with each other, for instance a
former Lawyer at ASF argued that GPL can not force someone else to provide
their own copyrighted code under GPL, although the larger legal community
tends to agree with FSF that it can. YMMV.

> > Assuming the answer to my licensing question is no, then I'm
> > interested in exactly how much nb-javac forks from javac and how
> > maintainable it is from outside?

Java (or more precisely, JRE, pre-OpenJDK) was deemed 15-20 years ago to be
incompatible with Apache principles, and although Sun allowed
redistribution of JRE, we couldn't do it. Java got classified the same as
Windows, Linux and other prerequisites as a "System Requirement", and that
term is only vaguely defined to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. In
the past (I was on Legal committee for 5 years or so) "System Requirement"
questions that listed one or more library-type components, would be denied.
IIRC, people tried that route for Hibernate, Berkley DB JE and Neo4j. Each
case is different, and should be evaluated on its merits.

> That could be done any way needed IMO. It could be forked and put on
> directly by the NB community once NB is at Apache. So, it would just be an
> OSS standalone component managed by the NB community; not Apache nor
> Oracle. Other options are clearly open to discussion. I would like to hear
> Oracle's POV on this.

Yes. What I am requesting from the community is to find out form Legal
whether this is for nb-javac only, or also the "java" cluster as a whole or
in part.

And as Geertjan pointed out else-thread, you want to find out "now" rather
than at the first release, which would be more painful.

Niclas Hedhman, Software Developer - New Energy for Java

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