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Proposal to update CPL [message #17494] Wed, 16 March 2005 15:41 Go to next message
Ed Burnette is currently offline Ed Burnette
Messages: 279
Registered: July 2009
Senior Member
I know that Eclipse has moved on to EPL, but CPL enjoys widespread use
outside the Eclipse community. The main differences between EPL and CPL are:

- the license steward in CPL is IBM, while EPL's steward is the Eclipse
Foundation, and
- a patent clause was removed from EPL in section 7. This was basically a
poison pill that discouraged litigation of any kind relating to software
patents.

Some people object to the patent poison pill in CPL. One camp objects to it
because they're worried they would lose the right to protect their IP from
possible infringers. Another camp objects to it because they're afraid big
companies with big patent portfolios want to use CPL solely to keep from
being sued.

Whether or not software patents are a good idea is beside the point, and it
would confuse the issue to get distracted by that. The point is that I don't
believe CPL was intended by its authors to be activist, i.e., presenting a
political agenda to limit software patents. Rather, I believe this was just
an oversight in the original version that has been corrected in the new
version (the EPL) at the request of several contributors. However, this
change makes it incompatible with CPL. In fact when the Foundation changed
over to EPL some code had to be rewritten because the authors couldn't be
found or wouldn't agree to relicense under EPL.

Now we have a situation where many open source projects use CPL. It's
incompatible with EPL, and furthermore can't be used at organizations that
have the above objections. I propose that IBM make the same changes in CPL
that were made in EPL, except for the license steward. This could become CPL
v1.1. That way future CPL based code would be compatible with EPL and the
conspiracy theorists can give it a rest.

http://www.eclipsepowered.org/archives/category/oss/

--
Ed Burnette
www.eclipsepowered.org
Opinions are my own, not necessarily my employer's or my spouse's
(*definitely* not my spouse's :)
Re: Proposal to update CPL [message #17520 is a reply to message #17494] Wed, 16 March 2005 19:23 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Marco Maccaferri is currently offline Marco Maccaferri
Messages: 132
Registered: July 2009
Senior Member
On 16/03/2005 16.41 Ed Burnette wrote:

> I propose that IBM make the same changes in CPL
> that were made in EPL, except for the license steward. This could become CPL
> v1.1. That way future CPL based code would be compatible with EPL and the
> conspiracy theorists can give it a rest.

I'm not a licensing expert, but AFAIK, existing source code can't be
relicensed under another license without permission from the original
author, even if it is a more recent revision of the same license. I mean
that code currently licensed under CPL 1.0 can't be relicensed under CPL
1.1 without permission from the original author. Future code can be
licensed directly under EPL, if the author chooses so (or maybe with the
dual licensing, if the code is compatible with both).

My questions is: what's the point of having a license that basically is
the copy of EPL ? This won't solve any problem with existing code, and
it is possible that future code won't be licensed under CPL 1.1 (if an
author won't relicense under EPL due to the removed patent clause, I
doubt that it will relicense under CPL 1.1).

Bye

--
Marco Maccaferri
Consulting, Design and Software Development - http://www.maccasoft.com
Eclipse Trader - http://eclipsetrader.sourceforge.net
Re: Proposal to update CPL [message #17584 is a reply to message #17520] Wed, 16 March 2005 21:03 Go to previous message
Ed Burnette is currently offline Ed Burnette
Messages: 279
Registered: July 2009
Senior Member
It's easier for an author to swallow upgrading a license from 1.0 to 1.1
than to switch to a whole 'nother license. Also, in section 7 of CPL1.0 it
says that if a new version of CPL comes out, "Contributor [i.e., any person
or entity that distributes the Program] may elect to distribute the Program
(including its Contributions) under the new version." Note only the license
steward (IBM or its assignee) can come out with a new version.

(That kind of makes me wonder why IBM didn't just transfer stewardship of
CPL to Eclipse, and take the offending clause out of CPL1.1 in the first
place, rather than creating EPL1.0. Maybe the lawyers have a good reason,
and anyway what's done is done.)

--
Ed "not a lawyer" Burnette
www.eclipsepowered.org

"Marco Maccaferri" <macca@maccasoft.com> wrote in message
news:d1a144$2tp$1@www.eclipse.org...
> My questions is: what's the point of having a license that basically is
> the copy of EPL ? This won't solve any problem with existing code, and it
> is possible that future code won't be licensed under CPL 1.1
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