Subject: Re: Adaptive Public License review
From: jcowan@reutershealth.com
Date: Thu, 22 Apr 2004 16:44:24 -0400

Carmen Leeming scripsit:

> "A Distributor may choose to distribute the Licensed Work, or any 
> portion thereof, in Executable form (an "EXECUTABLE DISTRIBUTION") to 
> any third party, under the terms of Section 2 of this License, provided 
> the Executable Distribution is made available under and accompanied by a 
> copy of this License ***and is distributed at no more than the cost of 
> physically performing Executable Distribution***, AND provided at least 
> ONE of the following conditions is fulfilled:"
> 
> (section between '***' marks to be removed)

Excellent.

> We used the same definition of Electronic Distribution Mechanism as used 
> in the MPL.  Specifically mentioning CDs and DVDs as Electronic 
> Distribution Mechanisms leaves out other valid current methods, as well 
> as future methods that may become standard.  I'm open to changing this, 
> but would invite other comments on how specific we want to get with this 
> definition.

I suggest something like "including, but not limited to, distribution by
FTP, HTTP, CD, or DVD".  The phrase "including, but not limited to" is
very useful, as it provides examples without constraining implementation.

> >The requirement to make the source of Subsequent Works available for
> >three full years in all cases except internal deployment is burdensome.
> >
> This clause (3.1a) was to promote the continued availablity of the 
> Subsequent Works, but we could reduce the time-frame if it is too 
> burdensome.  What time would you suggest as reasonable?

In fact, I am not thrilled with the whole idea of compelled publication of
Subsequent Works at all: it means, for example, that I can't make changes
to the source of an APLed application and then email the source to a
friend of mine without also publishing the source on a Web site.
Indeed, if it weren't for the internal-deployment provision, I would
argue that compelling publication makes the license not open source.

I don't know if you care about the FSF's certifying
the APL as a free software license: historically, they
have considered compelled-publication licenses unfree.  See
http://www.gnu.org/licenses/license-list.html#NonFreeSoftwareLicense .

The redline PDF at http://www.opensource.apple.com/apsl/2.0-redline.pdf
shows how the GPL rule was added to the 2.0 version of the APSL,
allowing either full publication or source-follows-executable rules.
Both this and the earlier 1.2 version of the APSL use 12 months rather
than 36 as the maximum required publication period.

IMHO the GPL's rule that source must accompany (or follow) executable
is really enough.  But this is a topic on which reasonable persons
can differ.

-- 
                Si hoc legere scis, nimium eruditionis habes.
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