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[REBOL] Re: steel latest news.. pretty long... Ignore if you wish..

From: andreas:bolka:gmx at: 17-Sep-2003 2:57

warning upfront: licensing discussion ahead. executive summary: - have a look at the Creative Commons "Attribution-NonCommercial- ShareAlike License" as that might be what you want ( - double-licensing (free for non-commercial, seperate commercial license) is tricky and harder than you might think, especially when contributions of others are to be merged into the "main" code-base. before embarking on double-licensing adventures, you should have a clear idea about your intentions (i.e. "what do I want to be my rights and obligations regarding the software", "what do I want to be the righty and obligations of contributors to my software") Tuesday, September 16, 2003, 10:45:47 PM, Maxim wrote:
> Basically, anyone who works on a OSI certified project HAS to share > his code
that's simply wrong. maybe you're mixing up GPL and other OSI-certified licenses here. there are quite a lot OSI-certified licenses (e.g. the MIT or BSD licenses), that do _not_ require contributors to share their code. GPL-licensed use however, requires exactly what you state - modifications to the code most be released under GPL which also enforces the release of modified code.
> and cannot really make any commercial license usefull.
users of your software licensed under a commercial license are only bound to this commercial license. however, GPL can make dual-licensing quite hard (as I explained in an earlier mail). the practices of Mysql AB show one possible solution to GPL/commercial-license dual-licensing issues.
> anyone in the world can copy a gpl bound project and then make > profit from it,
hmm - your statement is a bit vague. there are several ways a gpl-licensed user can "make profit" with the software, one is e.g. stated in GPL's 1: You may charge a fee for the physical act of transferring a copy, and you may at your option offer warranty protection in exchange for a fee. another possibility would be to charge for service offers which are based on the GPL-licensed software. however, any modifications to the software are bound to the GPL and _must_ therefore be released under GPL terms. that's why the GPL is often called a "viral license."
> I am not charging any money and I do not wish anyone else to do so > with my work, and sacrifices.
maybe you should get a clearer view of your wishes first. if you simply want to allow free use in non-commercial projects, you need a license that allows exactly that: free use in non-commercial projects. however, this only states how the software is to be _used_ but does not state how _changes_ to the original software are to be handled. you could enforce that modifications of your software are released with the same license the original software was released. so you would be allowed non-commercial use of those contributions. (**) if one of those contributions is really that huge or important and you want to make it available to your commercial customers, you would then have to negotiate a custom license with the copyright holder of the contribution. typically you would pay an appropriate amount for this license, or agree to share some percentage of your profit with the contributor. if the contributor grants you re-licensing rights for free - be happy :) but you sound a bit, like you would like to allow all people to contribute but only you are allowed to relicense stuff commercially and then make profit. although there are licensing possibilities to enforce this particular mode, as you might see, this is quite unfair - why should only you get paid for your stuff while you exploit contributors for your personal profit?
> So... I will build my own license - the SCL - Steel Community > License.
unless you have good license lawyers I would really discourage from building an own license as this is hard and very time-consuming work and unless you are familiar with the applicable laws, the chance is very high that the license you create is invalid and the terms of the license are not binding. instead I'd suggest to have a look at the Creative Commons licenses[1] especially at the "Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License" [2] as this might be what you want. you could also have a look at the OSI-certified licenses [3] and see if some license there matches your needs. [1] [2] [3] final warning: IANAL :) **: this would also allow you to bundle and non-comercially distribute the contributions with the "main" code-base. that means, you would be able to incorporate contributed changes and release the results from your web-site free for non-commercial use. -- Best regards, Andreas