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Re: [fab] Fedora as Free Software?



On Tue, 2006-06-13 at 15:25 -0500, Matt Domsch wrote:
> On Mon, Jun 12, 2006 at 03:37:39PM -0400, Michael Tiemann wrote:
> > As FC6 planning continues apace, I'd like to make sure that we don't
> > lose sight of this topic.  Is there any way we can push this forward?
> > It's irritating that we have licenses that are neither free software nor
> > under OSI-approved licenses.  Who is the logical point person for this?
> 
> 
> Michael,
> 
> As I see it, there are several ways forward.  The question is, to what
> extent is the OSI interested in reviewing more licenses?  The process
> outlined here:  http://opensource.org/docs/certification_mark.php
> requires a legal analysis from a licensed practitioner of your country
> (presumably the USA for this purpose).  Of the 200ish licenses that
> require some sort of review, that winds up being a lot of lawyer-hours
> of work.  It's not onorous for a single submission, but for a 3rd
> party group it would be.
> 
> Furthermore, it's recommended that the license owners themselves
> submit to OSI to allow for conversation.
> http://www.crynwr.com/cgi-bin/ezmlm-cgi?3:mss:11493:200604:eolpbjlnpihfepiphpbd
> 
> So either we could try to get the license owners to do it (preferred),
> Fedora could do it (maybe), or perhaps OSI could do it themselves.

Or, we could go back to first principles, which was the declaration that
Fedora was for free and open source software only, and we'd hone much
more closely to our original charter.  The OSI's work on license
proliferation has found that many one-of licenses have, for all intents
and purposes, outlived their usefulness, and in many of those cases,
outlived the license author's contact information.  We should clean up
the mess in both directions--by reviewing licenses that are truly
worthy, solving a problem that no existing license solves, and by
deprecating software licensed under non-free, non-OSI, or otherwise
problematic terms.  Just 'cause it was in FC1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 doesn't
mean the software was perfected qualified in the first place (because
nothing's perfect).

M


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