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From "Lawrence Rosen" <lro...@rosenlaw.com>
Subject RE: New versions of CC licenses
Date Fri, 06 Dec 2013 21:48:44 GMT
> What do you mean by "distribute them under different licenses"? 

I mean precisely what we at Apache (and many other FOSS projects) do with
BSD and MIT software that we include in our software. I also mean what
projects do who take Apache software and distribute it under the GPL, or
companies under proprietary licenses.


We encourage that! We even allow sublicensing for those who want to add more
terms and conditions.


But we don't claim that it affects in any way the underlying license for the
included software.


You keep saying that you can give fewer rights than you got from the
original licensor. Maybe so in some negotiated commercial transaction with
unsophisticated customers, but you can't take away rights that the original
licensor gave to the entire world. No FOSS licensor has ever said you could
do that.


As for what FSF says, I'd encourage them to speak for themselves here. But I
don't believe they have ever successfully prevented any software distributor
from combining GPL software /in the non-derivative-work way/ with other FOSS
software under a single non-GPL collective work license. And I've never
heard of them threatening any Apache project that might want to do that
combination for the convenience of its customers. They can rest assured that
their GPL license remains intact on their GPL software for the entire world
to use.





Lawrence Rosen

Rosenlaw & Einschlag, a technology law firm (www.rosenlaw.com
<http://www.rosenlaw.com/> )

3001 King Ranch Rd., Ukiah, CA 95482

Office: 707-485-1242

Linkedin profile: http://linkd.in/XXpHyu 


From: Jeffrey Thompson [mailto:jthom@us.ibm.com] 
Sent: Friday, December 06, 2013 1:10 PM
To: legal-discuss@apache.org
Subject: RE: New versions of CC licenses


"Lawrence Rosen" <lrosen@rosenlaw.com> wrote on 12/06/2013 03:31:54 PM:

> SITUTATION 1: You are describing the situation where Apache /gives/ 
> FOSS works to others who then distribute them under different 
> licenses. 

    What do you mean by "distribute them under different licenses"? 

In my hypo from a few notes ago, A distributes software to B under AL2.0.  B
combines it with GPL code and distributes the result to C under the GPL.  As
far as C is concerned, the GPL is the only license it needs to read in order
to understand what rights it gets from B, even for A's code.  AL2.0 is in
the notices file and C can review that if it wants to, but if there ever is
a dispute between B and C, the license of record, the terms that get
submitted to the court for interpretation, is the GPL, right?  If not, then
you're using English wrong.

> SITUATION 2: I'm also concerned about properly describing the 
> situation where Apache /takes/ FOSS works of others and then 
> distributes them under the Apache License. 

You may or may not be able to do that, depending on what the original
license is.  I'm confident that if we asked the FSF, they wouldn't say that
we can incorporate their GPL code into an Apache project and license it
outbound under AL2.0.  At best, Apache can include the GPL code in its
project and provide 2 licenses -- AL2.0 for everything not virally impacted
by the GPL code, and GPL for the remainder.  But, that's not distributing
the project "under the Apache License" in any reasonable interpretation of
that phrase.

I'm sure that there is a logic to your approach, but for the life of me, I
can't divine what it is.  Can you explain?

Counsel, IBM Software Group.

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