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From:Zak Greant Date:August 28 2004 1:29am
Subject:Re: MySQL Licensing Issues
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Greetings Derek and all,

Please note that I can't speak for MySQL here - these are just my 
personal observations.

In some ways, I would like to stay completely out of this, but someone 
needs to be on the other side. :)

> but if you go to that URL, you will find Marten commenting:
> "I hope you will have understanding with this, and that you will 
> appreciate that we listen to you and make changes as we go. For 
> instance, a misfortunate wording regarding "distribution" and more 
> specifically "internal distribution" has now been removed from our 
> licensing pages."
> except that if you go to  
> there is still the confusing verbiage:
> "The Commercial License, which allows you to provide commercial 
> software licenses to your customers or distribute MySQL-based 
> applications within your organization."
> ... so, one can come to one of two conclusions:
> o	Marten was speaking out turn, saying things had been corrected by 
> mistake, when they actually hadn't, or
> o	Marten was being deliberately false, trying to quiet the /. crowd

After some brief consideration, I would add a few more possible 

o Mårten made a quick fix to the language (after I had been pestering 
him for some days) and missed a bit of verbiage.

o Mårten deliberately left the language in to give pause to 
organizations who are generally viewed as one company, but are actually 
composed of different legal entities (like MySQL AB, MySQL GmbH, MySQL 
Inc. and MySQL Oy, and many other medium and large businesses)

Seems pretty clear to me that when entities like this give, loan, 
lease, rent, etc. each other software, that distribution has occurred. 
Language that lays this out more clearly might be nice.

Any way you slice it, the thing seems like a good candidate for a bug 
report to me.

> either way, it speaks of a growing problem with MySQL A.B. management, 
> in that they are "quick to speak about their commitment to the GPL, 
> and all that goes with it", but are very slow to actually "make good" 
> on that commitment.
> To this day, the licensing page is *still*, despite Marten's crowing 
> to the contrary, deliberately deceitful about whether or not a 
> Commercial License is needed for internal distribution.

Hrm. I wouldn't go that far. Mårten is a good person and I have never 
seem him crow, not even at daybreak.

I hope that a bit more attention from people at MySQL with the power to 
directly fix things will help clear up the issues. If I had been more 
effective at getting this taken care, perhaps we would not be needing 
to have this discussion right now.

> I'd be curious when this is, finally, going to be corrected. I know 
> I've been pointing it out for at least the last six months, possibly 
> longer (I'd have to check to be sure).

Heh... I have to admit that I too am curious. ;) As for the date, I 
know that we definitely discussed it at the MySQL Users Conference in 
April and that there was already an entry in the issue tracker about 
this for at least a few weeks by then.

Zak Greant
Not the MySQL AB Community Advocate

MySQL Licensing IssuesDerek J. Balling27 Aug
  • Re: MySQL Licensing IssuesZak Greant28 Aug