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From "Roy T. Fielding (Commented) (JIRA)" <j...@apache.org>
Subject [jira] [Commented] (LEGAL-120) Is the Adobe RTMP specification license compatible?
Date Thu, 05 Jan 2012 07:32:39 GMT

    [ https://issues.apache.org/jira/browse/LEGAL-120?page=com.atlassian.jira.plugin.system.issuetabpanels:comment-tabpanel&focusedCommentId=13180234#comment-13180234

Roy T. Fielding commented on LEGAL-120:

I am an Adobe employee, but I am not commenting from the perspective of Adobe and don't have
the right to make any additional license on Adobe's behalf.  However, I can read legalese.

There is no harm in reading the license or the spec.  The specification license is a conditional
patent license that provides a license to implementations that are compliant with the spec
for those claims that Adobe owns that are necessarily infringed by implementing the spec.
The conditions that are *not* licensed are listed in the license, but loosely summarized as
implementations that attempt to intercept or circumvent DRM-protected content.  You cannot
lose any rights that you already have by accessing or reading the spec, since the license
only gives you permission to do some things that otherwise might be forbidden due to Adobe's
patents (I do not know which ones, nor do I know when they might expire, but in any case you
won't need the license at all if no valid patents remain or if you don't happen to implement
the spec).

In other words, this is similar to the reciprocal patent clause that you will find in the
Apache License except it is only given to compliant implementations (like the Java licenses),
the only contributor in this case is Adobe, and it is only a patent license.  The copyright
license for the spec is very restrictive, but that would not impact your implementation unless
you wanted to include the spec itself. (A protocol is entirely operative by nature and hence
not itself copyrightable, IIRC.)

The spec document has the same patent license on the first three pages and then a long plain-text
document in PDF that appears to have been formatted like an Internet RFC but not submitted
as one (i.e., this is an ugly spec, but folks who are familiar with IETF protocols will find
it natural aside from the fact it is copyright Adobe).

I have no comment on the protocol quality -- never tried implementing it myself.

> Is the Adobe RTMP specification license compatible?
> ---------------------------------------------------
>                 Key: LEGAL-120
>                 URL: https://issues.apache.org/jira/browse/LEGAL-120
>             Project: Legal Discuss
>          Issue Type: Question
>            Reporter: Sebb
> Someone has asked for a RTMP plugin for JMeter. 
> The RTMP specification is available from [0]; the specification license is here [1].
> AIUI the license must be accepted before any implementation is distributed, so I assume
> - any implementation created by the ASF using the spec would need to abide by the license,
> - any 3rd party implementation that used the spec would also need to abide by the license.
> Are there any terms in the license that are unacceptable for the ASF?
> [0] http://www.adobe.com/devnet/rtmp.html
> [1] http://wwwimages.adobe.com/www.adobe.com/content/dam/Adobe/en/devnet/rtmp/pdf/rtmp_specification_license_1.0.pdf

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