Nicholas Vettese on Fri, 18 Jul 2003 16:15:26 -0400

[Date Prev] [Date Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: [PLUG] Which license?

Are there any websites that compare the different licenses. There are a few things I would like to work on as well, and knowing the differences in licensing would help me make these types pf choices.

South Jersey Linux User's Group

From: Magnus <>
Subject: Re: [PLUG] Which license?
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2003 07:28:02 -0400

On Friday, July 18, 2003, at 06:12 AM, Kam Salisbury wrote:

So, my question is, which license is more appropriate for something that is
just open source?

I would suggest limiting your choices to two or three selections.

If you want to cast the broadest possible net, you can use the BSD license. The BSD license gives the most possible freedom to the licensee where they will be able to choose how to distribute derived works.

If you want to provide enduring openness of your code, even if that means commercial entities might shy away from it (not always the case these days though) you could consider the Gnu GPL.

Most of it boils down to what you want done with the derived works.

I want to retain my rights to the scripts creative idea
but whish others to maybe see it and say "Oh... so that is how you do that."

Either of the licenses mentioned above will relinquish much of your control over the scripts, but still leave you with the copyright so you will continue to get credited with the original work.

Well, hopefully anyway. I chose "free for non-commercial use" for now since
I do not really know the various differences between all the choices. My
guess is that the BSD license fits my needs but I am not so sure. If someone
were to include my idea-concept-code in another project I would certainly
desire the nod of recognition if not some payola if it matured into a
commercial product.

None of the popular open source licenses will obligate the licensee to pay you for using your code. Using a different license with the hopes that it will give you more control over derived works will likely shoot your creative works in the foot.

If you're really serious about this, and don't mind spending a little $$ up front to get the right answer, I suggest giving Don Rosenberg a call at Stromian Technologies. He's one of the most authoritative sources on software licensing that you will find, and he is well versed on the multitude of OSI-approved licenses out there.

Don's web site is at

If you want Don's advice on the cheap, he has a book out on the subject as well:


C. Magnus Hedemark
PGP Key fingerprint = 984D 9A88 3D60 016F BE01 1506 60FB 85E1 9ABD 96F6
<< PGP.sig >>

STOP MORE SPAM with the new MSN 8 and get 2 months FREE*

Philadelphia Linux Users Group        --
Announcements -
General Discussion  --