[Mailman-Developers] Can i use the Bouncer API a Programm wich is not GPL?

Barry Warsaw barry at list.org
Fri Nov 5 17:10:59 CET 2010

On Nov 05, 2010, at 04:01 PM, Marc Egli wrote:

>We are building a newsletter application for the django framework. For bounce
>detection we want to use the Mailman bouncerAPI because reimplementing would
>be a bad idea. Now my question is: can i release my application under a less
>restrictive license like the bsd license? I don't distribute Mailman i only
>list it as a requirement in setup.py
>According to the gpl-faq this is a borderline case because i only invoke a
>function and wait for the response.
>Is it possible to use Mailman like this? Is this the intended use of the

I'm not sure I fully understand - you want to use the bounce detection code
that lives in Mailman 2's Bouncers package?  Do you want to be able to pass a
message object in, let all the heuristics run, and then get a list of
matching addresses out of it?

That's a very interesting use case, and it would be useful to have that
available as a separate package (perhaps something to do for MM3), but it's
not how the Mailman2 code is intended to be used.  You probably can use it
that way if you set up your PYTHONPATH correctly, but it's definitely untested
and unsupported.

As to whether it's legal or not, IANAL and won't make any official claims
about that.  Since the FSF owns the copyright, you'll need to ask them:


My gut feeling is that it would not be legal.

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