Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 29th Sep 2007 21:24 UTC, submitted by Kishe
GNU, GPL, Open Source "A research firm serving the mobile phone industry has published an 18-page whitepaper about open source licensing. Entitled 'GPLv2 vs. GPLv3', the paper examines the meteoric rise of open source software, and the forces that shaped each license, before concluding with an extremely detailed point-by-point comparison."
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RE BSD license.
by sbergman27 on Sun 30th Sep 2007 20:15 UTC in reply to "RE BSD license."
sbergman27
Member since:
2005-07-24

"""

BSD License = "Freedom TO"
GPL = "Freedom FROM"

"""

That's a reasonable observation.

From another angle:

BSD: Barriers to sharing code are do more harm than good.
GPL: Barriers to code sharing are unfortunate, but do more good than harm.

I think that the availability of FOSS licenses which have different strengths and weaknesses, to suit a variety of projects and authors has been key to our success. Even RMS agrees that Xiph's use of permissive licenses for their reference implementations for the ogg formats is preferable to copylefting them.

One should think very carefully when choosing an appropriate license... always keeping in mind that code reuse is *HARD*. Adding artificial barriers comes at a cost. Sometimes that cost might be outweighed by the advantages.

But in the end, the most important thing is that authors license their code in a way that really reflects their expectations as to what the responsibilities of the users of that code should be. If he expects the users of the code to give back, that should be in the license. Claiming to support permissive licenses and then moaning and whining when people don't pay money back to one's own project (as a certain well known leader of a permissively licensed project has done) does not help anyone.

Edited 2007-09-30 20:23

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE BSD license.
by llanitedave on Mon 1st Oct 2007 21:15 in reply to "RE BSD license."
llanitedave Member since:
2005-07-24

"BSD: Barriers to sharing code are do more harm than good.
GPL: Barriers to code sharing are unfortunate, but do more good than harm.


You got this backwards. The GPL is not a barrier to code sharing, it's a mandater of it. The GPL prevents a distributer from refusing to share the code. A BSD license allows the distributer to refuse to share the code.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE BSD license.
by sbergman27 on Tue 2nd Oct 2007 03:24 in reply to "RE BSD license."
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

"""

The GPL is not a barrier to code sharing, it's a mandater of it.

"""

Virtually no FOSS project which is not under GPL can use code from a GPL'd project. Even GPLv2 projects are prohibited from using GPLv3 code. That's a huge barrier to code sharing. A one-way barrier, though, for the most part, since great care has been taken by the GPLvX authors to ensure what they term "compatibility" with other FOSS licenses. That means making sure that GPL projects can take from other projects as they please, without the donor projects receiving anything in return.

I'm willing to accept that situation as (possibly) being good for FOSS as a whole. But please do not just ignore the fact that copyleft licenses do erect barriers to code sharing in the FOSS world.

I would file your argument in the "sometimes the benefits outweigh the disadvantages" category.

Edited 2007-10-02 03:30

Reply Parent Score: 1