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From Stian Soiland-Reyes <st...@apache.org>
Subject Re: Updating How To Apply License: include LICENSE?
Date Thu, 13 Oct 2016 09:16:54 GMT
On 11 October 2016 at 15:52, Shane Curcuru <asf@shanecurcuru.org> wrote:
> Should we update the license appendix to note that people wishing to use
> the license should also include a copy of the license?  (Presumably in
> the fairly-standard LICENSE file)
> Obviously we want to be careful about not over-reaching when providing
> advice to other software creators.  But since the license itself
> mandates "give any other recipients of the Work or Derivative Works a
> copy of this License", it's silly to have the appendix not suggest that
> other software creators, y'know, actually include the license itself.
> I know from our perspective that we intend the ASF to be around for
> years, and thus able to reliably serve the license URL.  But others may
> not want to rely on that, and we should encourage better behavior.

I am not so sure - a "LICENSE file" assumes:
1) You are using a traditional file/folder structure
2) The ASF license applies to the whole "project" (or where in the
folder structure is the LICENSE file to go?)
3) There are no additional (compatible) licenses (e.g. we typically
append to our own LICENSE files)
4) Users would know how to find the LICENSE file

For counter-examples, consider an Android app - although you could put
a LICENSE file inside it's .apk almost no mobile phone users would
know how to extract it.  Here adding it to the "About" menu or the
Google Play description (by URL) makes more sense.  Or a DVD player -
often these will come with a printed manual with the Apache license in
8pt font.

I think the most important thing is that anyone using the Apache
license includes the identifying permalink URL


Which given its permanence would IMHO satisfy our license term:

>       (a) You must give any other recipients of the Work or
>           Derivative Works a copy of this License;

I don't think there would be any problems in the foreseeable future to
understand what license text applies as there are today about two
million web pages referring to that URL in text:


There are unfortunately many other URL variants that also seem to work
- e.g. https, apache.org vs www.apache.org, LICENSE-2.0.html,
LICENSE-2.0.txt etc.   -- I would have appreciated a redirection to
the canonical URL. (This has been raised before..)

I think the license document should state it's own permalink also on
top of the page. (Now confusingly it says
http://www.apache.org/licenses/ !!) -- but perhaps it would be
confusingly late to change that for 2.0.

Stian Soiland-Reyes

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