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From:Warren Young Date:May 11 2005 7:43pm
Subject:Re: Documentation license
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Chris Frey wrote:

> Since the new documentation is based on the old documentation, it is under
> the LGPL as well.

The old documentation files themselves do not have copyright and license 
notice.  There is a copy of the LGPL within the old documentation, but 
from the text leading up to it, it seems that this is meant to apply to 
the code itself.

I'm not saying that the documentation is under no license.  If that were 
true, we'd have no right to use the documentation at all, as it would 
fall under standard copyright.  I'm just saying that it seems that there 
was no particular thought put into the topic.  This isn't surprising 
because the various documentation licenses we have now were either 
nonexistent or just barely coming into existence while MySQL++ was under 
significant development under the previous regime.  Since LGPL is a poor 
match for documentation, I believe they would have chosen one of these 
if they'd known of their existence, and cared.

As a result, I don't think it's a practical problem to assign a 
different license explicitly, as long as it has the same effective terms 
as we assumed it had before.  Specifically, it should be possible to use 
it commercially, so long as you share your changes and not revoke any 
privileges you recieved when distributing it.

> Plus, I don't think comments can be separated from code, license-wise, 

Sure they can.  A license is a contract, and you can write a contract 
with any terms you wish.  Since the comments are completely separable 
from the source code proper (the same executable code is generated 
independent of their presence or content) I don't see a problem treating 
them separately.

I'm not trying to hijack the documentation here, just put it under a 
license suited to documentation.

> There is some distaste for the new documentation licenses as well, 

All of them, or just some of them?

And, is this distaste in the form "we think this could be better", or 
"we won't add this to the distribution unless you change the license"? 
If the former, I'm not inclined to worry about it unless they come up 
with that better thing.  If they do have a better thing, let's use that.

As I see it, both the GNU FDL and the Creative Commons Attribution 
ShareAlike licenses are compatible with the intentions of the primary 
creators of MySQL++.  The artifacts they left behind for us to guess 
these intentions are the fact that it was LGPL licensed, and this 
statement from the original docs: "The intent of [licensing under LGPL] 
is allow developers to use my library to develop commercial programs and 
to allow it be distributed with commercial databases."

Tell you what, I'll ask Sinisa, and see if I can track down Kevin 
Atkinson and ask him as well.
Documentation licenseChris Frey11 May
  • Re: Documentation licenseWarren Young11 May
    • Re: Documentation licenseWarren Young11 May
    • Re: Documentation licenseChris Frey12 May
      • Re: Documentation licenseWarren Young12 May
        • Re: Documentation licenseChris Frey12 May