[PROPOSAL] Open Source certification

Will Lowe harpo at UDel.Edu
Sat Apr 10 21:01:46 UTC 1999

> the code from being reused in other software. As many have pointed out,
> Apple's code isn't good for a thing besides running Apple's proprietary
> OS; due to the license, it can't even be recycled in any of the free OS's.
> This may explain some of the bitterness, apart from any OSD violations.
But here we get into feeping creaturism.  We _don't_ have a solid
definition of Free Software in the OSD or DPSG if we also want to include
the stipulation that the code be useful for anything in particular.

Obviously we can't write an OSD v.2 that includes a clause about
_everything_ that anybody might ever write into a license.  I think that
the only reason the GPL stands up under so much debate is because it's
been around for a while and we've got a general consensus about how we
think the wording should be interpreted.  Even then,  we had big problems
e.g. with Kde and Debian.

How do we make what we mean by Free Software clear to people _before_ we
have to argue about it?  At the moment,  it often seems to me that neither
side is completely sure _what_ the topic of the argument is about.


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