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From "Lawrence Rosen" <lro...@rosenlaw.com>
Subject RE: using the apache cla for another project
Date Tue, 22 Jul 2014 16:34:44 GMT
Esteve Fernandez wrote:
> ....we're thinking of adopting a CLA model for contributions. Given that at the
> OSRF we already release our code under the Apache 2.0 license and that
> we're a nonprofit and public organization like the Apache Software 
> Foundation, we thought of following a similar approach to contributions.

Using a CLA for contributions like Apache does is one model. Directly relying on OSI-approved
FOSS licenses for contributions from known contributors is another, easier way.

In OpenMRS, a 501(c)(3) non-profit that distributes open source medical records software around
the world, we intend to accept almost any FOSS-licensed contribution without using a CLA.
We will rely on FOSS "license compatibility" and a NOTICE file to ensure that the software
aggregations we distribute can actually be used. For compatibility analysis, we rely on OSI,
FSF and Creative Commons for their advice rather than publishing our own third party license
policies.

Please see attached. Your feedback is welcomed.

/Larry

-----Original Message-----
From: Esteve Fernandez [mailto:esteve@apache.org] 
Sent: Thursday, July 17, 2014 9:23 AM
To: legal-discuss@apache.org
Subject: using the apache cla for another project

Hi,

I'm an Apache Thrift PMC member and also work for the Open Source Robotics Foundation (http://osrfoundation.org/),
where we're thinking of adopting a CLA model for contributions. Given that at the OSRF we
already release our code under the Apache 2.0 license and that we're a nonprofit and public
organization like the Apache Software Foundation, we thought of following a similar approach
to contributions. We'd like to use the same CLAs because of the ASF approach to contributions
is widely accepted in the opensource world, which would help us lower the barrier to contribute.
However we have a question about the preface and the overall text of the ICLA, namely this
part:

"You accept and agree to the following terms and conditions for Your present and future Contributions
submitted to the Foundation. In return, the Foundation shall not use Your Contributions in
a way that is contrary to the public benefit or inconsistent with its nonprofit status and
bylaws in effect at the time of the Contribution. Except for the license granted herein to
the Foundation and recipients of software distributed by the Foundation, You reserve all right,
title, and interest in and to Your Contributions."

does this mean that if we (OSRF) use the same wording as the ASF ICLA for our CLA, we can
only relicense a contribution as long as it's under another opensource license? (i.e. consistent
with our nonprofit and public status) We're happy with the Apache 2.0 license, but we wonder
if at some point we want to use a different opensource license (e.g. MIT, Clear BSD, etc.)
we won't be able to do so for contributions.

Thanks.

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