Urgent Question about Python licensing

Tim Peters tim.one at home.com
Sat Mar 10 20:59:21 CET 2001

[Dave LeBlanc]
> ...
> My questions are these:
> 1. What prevents Python and GPL code from being distributed together?
> If I write some Python code that drives a GPL'd app (but which does
> not depend on that app), what prevents me from offering both my python
> code and the GPL'd app on the same medium (disk/CD/web)?

You mean other than paranoia <0.9 wink>?  Not much, but GPL Interpretation is
an arcane art, so you had better ask the FSF about this.

> 2. Is it currently so,


> or will Python end up with, some license that requires that python
> scripts be covered by the GPL?

Mabye if the sun goes nova, and that cools things off enough so that hell can
finally freeze over.

> 3. Is Python 2.0 covered by that evil CNRI 1.6 license?

2.0 is covered by CNRI's 1.6 license, as well as by BeOpen.com's minor
variation on that.  I disagree that it's evil, although the way it was
imposed on the community was exceedingly ham-handed, and it has created
problems due to its purported incompatibility with the GPL.

> I avoided 1.6 mostly because of the license, and thought that 2.0 had
> "skipped" 1.6 and used a far more equitable license then the 1.6 one.

I suggest you read the licenses in question (you clearly have not yet).

> 1.6's license permits the copyright holder to suddenly decide that
> anyone using the covered software must pay a fee (or any other thing they
> so desire - this is only an example), and by virtue of your even so much
> as having read the license are implicitly bound to their unilateral
> declaration - lovely Virginia laws).

No offense intended, Dave, but this is the most concentrated pile of
absurdist FUD I've seen in a solid year of ill-informed license rants.  Even
by the FSF's standards, the CNRI 1.6 license is a "free software" license
(see "The License of Python 1.6b1 and later versions", at:



the-2.1-license-will-require-giving-your-firstborn-to-guido-ly y'rs  - tim

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