[sword-devel] GPL and other license related questions

Chris Little chrislit at crosswire.org
Sat Jan 26 15:30:27 MST 2008

On Jan 26, 2008, at 11:10 AM, Jason Galyon wrote:
> This is full of angst and ignorance.  I would expect that of a child  
> but
> not a Christian.  If you can not develop a frontend (for example) in
> whatever OSI approved license you choose then I believe that is one of
> the many reasons why people see the GPL as viral and freedom  
> destroying.
> Some look for the good of all and see GPL as not the best method to
> reach those ends.
> Again, there are other licenses out there and if you are forced to  
> only
> use GPL then read that again and notice the word "FORCE".  Lets try  
> and
> be civil and take the rhetoric out.

Um, name calling isn't welcome.

Your thoughts about how a Bible library should be licensed are fine,  
and you're certainly welcome to license YOUR libraries and GUIs and  
tools and whatnots however you like, using whatever reasoning you  
choose to employ. But Sword is GPL, and it's really not up for  
discussion. We've incorporated FSF and other GPL software, so it's not  
even just an issue of relicensing.

The fact is, our license has never been a hinderance to legitimate  
development interests, to my knowledge. That is to say, it's never  
prevented the development of anything due to a license conflict. If it  
were to do so, I'm sure we would consider special exceptions.

The GPL is viral. It does force people to use the GPL for work that  
incorporates GPL works. That's not a limitation on freedom. You're  
still free to use something else. But if you want the benefit of OUR  
work, you have to play by those rules and you have to give others the  
same freedoms to use your derivative work as you have been given to  
use ours.

If you want to spit rhetoric back and forth until you're blue in the  
face about how the GPL limits freedom or how capitalism is evil (since  
you're the only one who has mentioned that), it's still not going to  
change our licensing. GPL has served us well over the decades.


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