[REBOL] Re: steel latest news.. pretty long... Ignore if you wish..
From: maximo:meteorstudios at: 17-Sep-2003 14:45
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Andreas Bolka [mailto:[andreas--bolka--gmx--net]]
> warning upfront: licensing discussion ahead.
he he he.
> executive summary:
> - have a look at the Creative Commons "Attribution-NonCommercial-
> ShareAlike License" as that might be what you want
I am still looking at many licenses... these are on the top of the list.
> - 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.
Its also very hard to enforce... unless your name ends with something like Gates or Lucas
> before embarking on double-licensing adventures, you should have a
> clear idea about your intentions [...]
that's why its taking time to release the latest stuff... licensing is picky and its
not easily undone.
> 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.
Well, I just re-read the osi "open source" definition, and you are right that it is not
in the guidelines that what you change must be re-distributed... BUT it does state that
you cannot distribute a derived work, without it also being public and free... which
> users of your software licensed under a commercial license are only
> bound to this commercial license.
hum, the way gpl is worded, it seems oherwise, but I guess your right (I'm pretty new
to open licensing).
> 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.
Yeah, anything you did before getting a commercial license is bound to GPL (even while
evaluating the software) and that's not much fun...
And then, even getting a commercial license does not free that code from GPL...
No one really applies this but that's how its supposed to be, in theory.
> 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.
one of the very clear aspects of the SCL in its current form.
> 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
The way the SCL is right now, the code base, api and libraries are free and always will
be. If a "commercial" license ever exists, it will be an extra package, with tools that
are not part of the code base. If the code base needs to be improved for those extras
to be built, those benefits will be part of the code base and thus also free...
Actually, commercial useage IS free as long as you contribute to the code base OR by
promoting your use of steel on your site and/or within applications built with it. Thats
> 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.
nope, no profit in it for me except in being able to use the contributor's stuff for
free like they are allowed to do so with steel, by contributing to it. There is no "commercial
That's why its a community licence. Any one which contributes or promotes steel can
use the code base for free in any cirmcumstance. Editing and redistribution of that
codebase is handled seperatately from useage, but is still free and legal, as long as
you follow the guidelines.
Additionally, anyone can create plugins without having to redistribute them within the
codebase. As long as they are not derived from the code base, they are not bound to
> > 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.
Most licenses are themselves open-source. Thus, I will pick the one license which I
must edit least and fill in the details.
Frankly, I'm sure license legality is very fragile, simply because laws differ in every
country and state, even microsoft spends millions defending their stuff. Its also very
hard to defend ownership of any logic concept WRT patents because there are stupid patents
which cover such mundane aspects of programming that pretty much everything we program
is illegal in a way... only $$$$ people actually benefit from patents, because only
they have the tens of thousands of dollars needed to defend a patent in court.
> instead I'd suggest to have a look at the Creative Commons licenses
> especially at the "Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License" 
> as this might be what you want.
> you could also have a look at the OSI-certified licenses  and see
> if some license there matches your needs.
This takes so long... but I have looked at a few of them... and most do not completely
separate the gap of useage and editing... None I've seen so far match the SCL in essence.
I will post the SCL as stated in my previous mail, shortly, and then, we might go in
more detail... anyways how am I going to watchdog people in china, australia, polland
and the united-states... we all know its impossible... I just want the essence of the
project to be clear and have a backup if anything ever goes out of hand... which I doubt.
In any case, there never was intent to make money with steel. The license is simply
to protect everyone who contributes and uses tools from the steel project.
Thanks for the comments and suggestions... all is noted and taken into account (even
if some of my replies seem to indicate otherwise)... I'm still analysing the best course