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From "Geir Magnusson Jr." <g...@pobox.com>
Subject Re: Open Source, Patents and "Patent Exhaustion"
Date Thu, 10 Apr 2008 21:12:27 GMT

On Apr 10, 2008, at 11:01 AM, Sam Ruby wrote:
> On Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 10:46 AM, Henri Yandell <bayard@apache.org>  
> wrote:
>> On Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 2:25 AM, Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>  
>> wrote:
>>> On Wed, Apr 9, 2008 at 11:34 PM, Henri Yandell <bayard@apache.org>  
>>> wrote:
>
>>> I don't think we should treat contributions as targeted donations.
>>> Instead we should feel free to copy code wholesale from project to
>>> project within the ASF.
>>
>> Ugh. I'd misremembered the recent FAQ
>> (http://www.apache.org/foundation/licence-FAQ.html#PatentScope):
>>
>> "Once a patent claim is subject to Apache's Grant of Patent License,
>> it is licensed under the terms of that Grant to the ASF and to
>> recipients of any software distributed by the ASF for any Apache
>> software product whatsoever."
>>
>> Thought we'd said it was hooked to a product - looks like we said it
>> was available for any Apache product at that point.
>
> +1

Does "+1" mean that you agree that it is available to any ASF product,  
or that you agree we said it is available?

That's only true if the contributor signed the ICLA, as the ICLA  
grants the license to both the ASF and downstream licensees the patent  
grant, and the AL only grants to downstream licensees.  The ASF can be  
a downstream licensee in the latter case, but the limitations of the  
patent grant to the covered Work apply.

The ICLA says :

3. Grant of Patent License. Subject to the terms and conditions of
    this Agreement, You hereby grant to the Foundation and to
    recipients of software distributed by the Foundation a perpetual...

The AL says :

3. Grant of Patent License. Subject to the terms and conditions of
    this License, each Contributor hereby grants to You a perpetual...

So the history of the contribution matters as to whether or not we can  
apply the patent license to all ASF products.

geir

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