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The first release candidate for the Artistic License 2.0 and the
Contributor License Agreement are now up for review on
<http://perlfoundation.org/legal/>. Thanks to all who contributed
questions and suggestions.

Allison

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  • Mock at Jun 2, 2006 at 7:34 am

    On Thu, Jun 01, 2006 at 11:38:10PM -0700, Allison Randal wrote:
    The first release candidate for the Artistic License 2.0 and the
    Contributor License Agreement are now up for review on
    <http://perlfoundation.org/legal/>. Thanks to all who contributed
    questions and suggestions.

    Allison
    What's the diff from the last version?

    I think the following questions need to be clearly answered and put into the
    faq:

    Can I re-license a modified version under the GPL v2? Why?

    - If I can, then OpenBSD will likely do so, and offer perl under those terms.

    Can I re-license a modified version under the Artistic v1 license? Why?

    - Unless they can do this, in which case they probably will.
    - From talking to Theo, OpenBSD will probably never ship with code with a
    patent provision (Apache2 is not even in the ports tree). This is personally
    a big pain in the ass, so I'm hoping one of the two above is true.

    Can I include code from a GPL v2 project? Why?

    - This sucks if provision 13 prevents me from linking to GPL v2 libraries
    as there are many of them that are very useful, and unlikely to change
    license. It would be nice if the FSF could answer this question, as they
    are pretty much the authoritative source of info on what is compatible with
    the GPL.

    Can I include code from an Artistic v1 licensed project? Why?

    - Obviously if I can't do this makes using old perl bits harder unless the
    author can be tracked down and convinced to relicense. I'm pretty sure this
    is obviously yes, but it would be good to have that stated in the faq, so I
    can point lawyers/bosses/clients to it.

    What is the status of code that was distributed by someone who has lost their
    license under provision 13? Example: If I received a modified perl from SCO
    under the Artistic v2 license, am I allowed to distribute that code if SCO
    later files patent litigation, losing their license (assuming that I am
    otherwise in compliance myself)? Why?

    - This has the potential to taint the work of people down the chain of
    distribution, causing all sorts of mess.

    mock
  • Allison Randal at Jun 3, 2006 at 1:10 am

    mock wrote:

    What's the diff from the last version?
    - Tweaked the wording of the "Original License" definition in the
    Artistic License to make it clearer that it's talking about the copy of
    the license shipped with the Package (i.e. the license isn't
    auto-updating) and added an entry to the FAQ to explain this.

    - Clarified the Artistic FAQ on the patent clause.

    - Added some language about future patents to the CLA.
    I think the following questions need to be clearly answered and put into the
    faq:

    Can I re-license a modified version under the GPL v2? Why?
    Yes. Because GPL v2 satisfies the requirements of clause 4(c)(ii).
    - If I can, then OpenBSD will likely do so, and offer perl under those terms.
    Since Perl is currently dual-licensed under the GPLv2, he wouldn't be
    doing anything particularly exciting there.
    Can I re-license a modified version under the Artistic v1 license? Why?
    No. In practical terms, Artistic 2.0 is a "bug fix" version of the
    Artistic License, and we don't really want people to keep using Artistic
    1.0, any more than we want people using Perl 5.6.0. In legal terms,
    Artistic 1.0 is a less restrictive license than Artistic 2.0 (see the
    answer to the next question), so only the original author (the
    "Copyright Holder") can relicense Artistic 2.0 code under Artistic 1.0.
    Can I include code from a GPL v2 project? Why?
    No, you can't include code from a GPL (1 or 2 or 3) project in an
    Artistic licensed package. Because the Artistic License (1.0 or 2.0) is
    a less restrictive license than GPL (1 or 2 or 3). That is, if you
    distributed GPL'd code under the Artistic License, you would be giving
    away rights that the original author never gave you. The most obvious
    example of this is the fact that the Artistic License allows proprietary
    versions, but the GPL does not.
    - This sucks if provision 13 prevents me from linking to GPL v2 libraries
    as there are many of them that are very useful, and unlikely to change
    license.
    It doesn't prevent you from linking to GPL libraries (in any version).
    It only prevents you from absorbing GPL code into a package and
    distributing that GPL code under an Artistic License. (You couldn't do
    this under Artistic 1.0 either.)
    It would be nice if the FSF could answer this question, as they
    are pretty much the authoritative source of info on what is
    compatible with the GPL.
    We got the FSF/SFLC involved early in the process. (You may not know,
    but Bradley Kuhn, who was Executive Director of the FSF for many years,
    was largely responsible for the first draft of Artistic 2.0 during the
    Perl 6 RFC process.)

    The FSF's definition of compatibility is all about upstream
    compatibility: what licenses can be included in GPL'd code. Artistic 2.0
    meets this measure of GPL compatibility through clause 4(c)(ii).

    The FSF doesn't care about downstream compatibility: whether you can
    include GPL'd code in a package under some license other than the GPL.
    The only license that is downstream compatible with the GPL is the GPL.
    This is an intentional choice by the FSF. (Potentially, someone could
    invent a license with exactly the same terms as the GPL but different
    wording, and it would be possible to distribute GPL code under that
    license. But there wouldn't be much point.)
    Can I include code from an Artistic v1 licensed project? Why?
    Yes. Because the terms of Artistic 2.0 are the same as Artistic 1.0,
    aside from the added patent clause. That means Artistic 2.0 is a more
    restrictive license than Artistic 1.0 (it gives away fewer rights), so
    any Artistic 1.0 code can be distributed as Artistic 2.0.
    - Obviously if I can't do this makes using old perl bits harder unless the
    author can be tracked down and convinced to relicense. I'm pretty sure this
    is obviously yes, but it would be good to have that stated in the faq, so I
    can point lawyers/bosses/clients to it.
    We'll work on an addition to the FAQ.
    What is the status of code that was distributed by someone who has lost their
    license under provision 13? Example: If I received a modified perl from SCO
    under the Artistic v2 license, am I allowed to distribute that code if SCO
    later files patent litigation, losing their license (assuming that I am
    otherwise in compliance myself)? Why?
    You would have to cease distribution. Or, more practically, you would
    have to go download a legal version of Perl from your nearest CPAN
    mirror and use it instead.

    (If the company you're getting your open source packages from has such
    poor judgment that it starts attacking open source projects or attacking
    people for using open source code, it's probably a good idea to distance
    yourself from the company anyway.)
    - This has the potential to taint the work of people down the chain of
    distribution, causing all sorts of mess.
    So does the GPL, by requiring downstream users to distribute their
    modified source code. But, they do it for a very specific purpose: to
    promote the freedom of the code and the freedom of their users.

    Revoking someone's license to use the software is an inconvenience. But
    then, that someone would have already caused a pretty huge inconvenience
    by filing patent litigation against one of our users for using our
    software. The point is to make it inconvenient for the someone who
    started the mess too, and so encourage them to respect the freedom of
    our users.

    Allison
  • Nicholas Clark at Jun 3, 2006 at 12:56 pm

    On Fri, Jun 02, 2006 at 06:09:41PM -0700, Allison Randal wrote:

    Can I include code from a GPL v2 project? Why?
    No, you can't include code from a GPL (1 or 2 or 3) project in an
    Artistic licensed package. Because the Artistic License (1.0 or 2.0) is
    - This sucks if provision 13 prevents me from linking to GPL v2 libraries
    as there are many of them that are very useful, and unlikely to change
    license.
    It doesn't prevent you from linking to GPL libraries (in any version).
    It only prevents you from absorbing GPL code into a package and
    distributing that GPL code under an Artistic License. (You couldn't do
    this under Artistic 1.0 either.)
    What wasn't said in as many words (but I think I'm correct here) is that
    you can include code from a GPL (1 or 2 or 3) project with code from an
    Artistic 2 project if and only if you redistribute the combined work under
    the GPL (single licensed under the GPL).
    (Because that the Artistic License 2.0 permits you to take the code you
    received under it and redistribute it onwards under the GPL).

    Although to maintain your rights to continue redistributing (under the GPL)
    the code you received under the Artistic License 2.0, you have to comply with
    all provisions of the Artistic License 2.0 (such as provision 13).
    In turn, am I right in thinking that if one is in compliance with all terms
    of GPL 3, then one is also in compliance with all terms of the Artistic
    License 2.0?

    Please note I am neither Allison nor a lawyer.

    Nicholas Clark

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postedJun 2, '06 at 6:39a
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