[Python-Dev] License cleanup

Greg Ward gward@cnri.reston.va.us
Wed, 15 Sep 1999 08:30:32 -0400

On 14 September 1999, Barry A. Warsaw said:
> Data point: I know that there are a number of companies that have
> embedded JPython in their commercial products.  So far I've had zero
> complaints from them on the JPython license.

Just thought I should join the tide of opposition: heck, I *work* for
CNRI and I still don't like the license.  I didn't say much about the
new JPython license because a) I trust Barry's judgement, b) it was
certainly an improvement over the old JPython license, and c) I wasn't
especially worried about one part of CNRI (Guido's group) taking JPython
away from another part (the group that Andrew and I are on).

However, that doesn't change the fact that the "new" license is a nasty
piece of legalistic gibberish.  Making it the license for Python 1.6
would be a major setback -- while it was better than the old JPython
license, it's a damn sight worse than the old Python license.  I have
zero sympathy for the legal beagles here with their narrow corporatist
viewpoint; trying to treat Python as just another potential piece of
intellectual property is wrong-headed in the extreme.  The free software 
world simply does not work that way.

BTW, I suspect that the companies embedding JPython haven't minded the
license because they come from the Java world, a world that seems to me
to be dominated by corporate pin-headed thinking.  The idea of
community, openness, and sharing is utterly alien to these suit-wearing,
smarmy Java frat-boy types, so JPython's licensing terms were probably a
breath of fresh air to them.  ("What?  No $100,000 source license fee?
Wow!")  ("But wait Chip -- it's not BUZZWORD COMPLIANT!  I can't find
enough TLAs!!!")

Hmmm, enough flaming Java weenies.  Please, don't anybody take the last
paragraphy too seriously or personally...

Greg Ward - software developer                    gward@cnri.reston.va.us
Corporation for National Research Initiatives    
1895 Preston White Drive                           voice: +1-703-620-8990
Reston, Virginia, USA  20191-5434                    fax: +1-703-620-0913