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Re: The Great Licensing Discussion

On Tue, Dec 20, 2011 at 6:31 AM, Michael Richardson <..hidden..> wrote:
>>>>>> "Chris" == Chris Travers <..hidden..> writes:
>    Chris> So, suppose we do this.  What would it mean for contribution?
>    Chris> If you are a current developer, would you be more or less
>    Chris> likely to contribute in the future if the code was
>    Chris> BSD-licensed?
>    Chris> If you are not a current developer, would you be more or less
>    Chris> likely to join development in the future if the code was
>    Chris> BSD-licensed?
> I am mostly agnostic, given that much of the code is GPLv2.
> What matters more than the license, is the mechanism by which I
> contribute.   LedgerSMB had severe problems accepting code as a result of
> licensing decisions (version n+1 not GPL).

You mean SQL-Ledger.  LedgerSMB has never addressed licensing changes.

At any rate as I say the work as a whole license cannot change
anywhere in the reasonably near future.
>    Chris> The second is this.  I am planning on writing reference
>    Chris> implementations for the stored procedure discovery routines
>    Chris> in other languages, namely PHP and Python.  At present I
>    Chris> don't see a reason not to license these pieces of my work
>    Chris> under a BSD-style license, though I am open to comment here.
> Why are you doing this work?
> Who is it is for?  Do they care?

The idea is to showcase a reference implementation of query mapping
functions in other languages to attract a larger community.  Such work
is entirely unbillable.  It's something I am committing to the

> I have no objection to having the code.   BSD 2-clause is entirely
> compatible with GPLv2, and can be relicensed as GPLv2.

The relicensing debate is something which is surprisingly complex.  My
view (after discussing this with Richard Fontana from the software
freedom law center a couple years ago) is that the BSD license does
not allow attaching restrictions to unmodified BSD-licensed code.
This is clearly not a problem with the GPL v2, and nobody believes the
2-clause BSD license is incompatible with the GPL v3 either, although
there certainly is no consensus as to why they are compatible or what
either license requires from the other to be compatible.