Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license change

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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by Webdongle » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:17 am

mbabker wrote:
Webdongle wrote:The question was not about the licences listed in the document ... it was about you saying "we have authorised OSM". It suggests that the OSM needs the permission of the devs to use a licence.
Amy is correct, even if the wording does convey an unintended or incorrectly perceived message.

In order to relicense the code, the contributors must give their consent to a change of license. ...
If by the word 'We' Amy meant the contributors to the Joomla project then yes she was correct. But the document she pointed to allows licences that the contributors to the Joomla project have not have not consented to.

I have asked Amy a question about her use of the phrase "we have authorised OSM" and am still waiting to hear from her what she meant. ... So who is the 'we' she is referring to and why do the OSM have to have their authorisation ? Amy, please give a straight answer so that any misunderstanding can be cleared up.
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by NivF007 » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:18 am

@Andrew - Assuming that the MIT option has not come up among Framework Dev's (i.e. if it's already come up for discussion and doesn't have traction with the Framework Team - no point in pushing it) - do a simple poll with the Framework team first.

If it's majority of the Framework Team feels that maximum benefit would be achieved, in the end, by MIT, we move to the next step. If not, we drop it.

If it's an idea that has majority support, then we can explore the possibility of setting aside the JCA for those who agree, the plausibility of removing the code for those who do not - and ask OSM to do the final 'legal analysis' to make sure everything is copacetic.

If there is going to be a switch to a more permissive license - I don't see any benefit to LGPL over MIT, only further barriers to adoption which could be removed - so I think it's worth considering a) if it's desired; and b) if it's plausible.

What are your thoughts on this?

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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by masterchief » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:20 am

NivF007 wrote:@Andrew - Assuming that the MIT option has not come up among Framework Dev's (i.e. if it's already come up for discussion and doesn't have traction with the Framework Team - no point in pushing it) - do a simple poll with the Framework team first.
Ok. How are you foresee carrying that out and what is the question or questions you are going to ask?
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by masterchief » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:26 am

Webdongle wrote:If by the word 'We' Amy meant the contributors to the Joomla project then yes she was correct. But the document she pointed to allows licences that the contributors to the Joomla project have not have not consented to.
If you sign the JCA you consent, if you don't sign, you don't consent and you are limited to minor contributions to the source code. The details of how it came to be don't matter and you haven't really been able to grasp the concepts even when they are explained to you (we had this same problem when you were complaining that you didn't get "git" and "Github" - and you still didn't get it).
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by mbabker » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:29 am

Webdongle wrote:
mbabker wrote:
Webdongle wrote:The question was not about the licences listed in the document ... it was about you saying "we have authorised OSM". It suggests that the OSM needs the permission of the devs to use a licence.
Amy is correct, even if the wording does convey an unintended or incorrectly perceived message.

In order to relicense the code, the contributors must give their consent to a change of license. ...
If by the word 'We' Amy meant the contributors to the Joomla project then yes she was correct. But the document she pointed to allows licences that the contributors to the Joomla project have not have not consented to.
Actually, yes, the code contributors to the Joomla project have consented to that via signature on said document. As far as I'm aware, nobody has revoked their signing of that document or anything that would remove their consent on the proposed action. If you are going by the OSM definition of contributors to the project, then you are correct in that not all contributors to the Joomla project consent to this.
Webdongle wrote:I have asked Amy a question about her use of the phrase "we have authorised OSM" and am still waiting to hear from her what she meant. As far as I can see Amy is not on the PLT http://www.joomla.org/about-joomla/the- ... -team.html . So who is the 'we' she is referring to and why do the OSM have to have their authorisation ? Amy, please give a straight answer so that any misunderstanding can be cleared up.
"We" would refer to the code contributors as they have granted a "perpetual, irrevocable, non-exclusive, worldwide, no-charge, royalty-free, sublicensable" license to OSM. So, code contributors must still grant permission, or authorize, OSM to perform any actions with regards to the license of the code base.

Note that the quoted text comes from the copy of the JCA, General Edition , Version 1, which I signed on May 1, 2011, and does not account for any changes made to the document since that time.

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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by dilbert4life » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:30 am

MIT is not an option. Unless you want to do all the legwork to contact each and every dev who has ever contributed to the Framework and get their express permission, then it would be an option, but as it stands, it's not an option because it's not in the JCA, and the JCA contains all thenpossiblenlicenses which OSM has the legal right to re license the code under. Anything is off the table at this point.
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by NivF007 » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:33 am

1) Get a list of Framework contributors;

2) Do a quick poll - options are

- GPL
- LGPL
- MIT

3) Look at it - make it available to the team - determine if it's worth pursuing.

The shortest, most succinct, description, btw, which I've found for each (for the benefit of others following along)
GPL: if you use my code in yours, you must distribute your code as I do for mine;

LGPL: if you modify my code, you must distribute your modifications

MIT: do what you want with my code except pretend that the code is yours
Again, I'm asking you, do you feel this is worth pursuing? If it's not, and we are going off on a tangent, then as you are pretty much the lead on the LGPL movement, let me know please.
dilbert4life wrote:Anything is off the table at this point.
Is that a typo (off) or what is meant?

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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by AmyStephen » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:33 am

I think Webdongle and Niv are just flat out trolling at this point. These are not difficult concepts. They just want to play. They are on my ignore at this point -- they are just creating noise that makes it impossible for anyone to follow along since they have no valid points to raise.

Signing off folks. =)

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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by mbabker » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:37 am

NivF007 wrote:
dilbert4life wrote:Anything is off the table at this point.
Is that a typo (off) or what is meant?
I'd say he meant "anything else is off the table", meaning based on the guidelines set by the JCA, options like relicensing to MIT are not available at present unless someone wants to do the legwork on that (anyone got a year of time to dedicate to seeking the consent of contributors and working through the legal issues?).

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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by dilbert4life » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:37 am

Anything *else* is off the table right now.
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by NivF007 » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:40 am

Thank you kindly gentlemen!!!

So I guess we file this one under 'nice to think about' but not 'feasible' given the complexity and effort required.

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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by NivF007 » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:45 am

AmyStephen wrote:I think Webdongle and Niv are just flat out trolling at this point. These are not difficult concepts. They just want to play. They are on my ignore at this point -- they are just creating noise that makes it impossible for anyone to follow along since they have no valid points to raise.

Signing off folks. =)
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right say it!!! :p

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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by wilsonge » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:51 am

And that's why LGPL is actually taking the Joomla mantra despite the initial accusations :) It balances the communities (L)GPL heritage with the need for a more permissive license to attract said developers

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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by masterchief » Tue Mar 04, 2014 4:02 am

NivF007 wrote:Again, I'm asking you, do you feel this is worth pursuing? If it's not, and we are going off on a tangent, then as you are pretty much the lead on the LGPL movement, let me know please.
I suspect most of the framework contributors will simply ignore you because of the way you have been conducting yourself. I think we can do without any more tangents. Unless you and Webdongle have new and pertinent questions relating to the question at hand, I suggest you let your arguments rest (that is, be quiet - shhhh).
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by NivF007 » Tue Mar 04, 2014 4:31 am

wilsonge wrote:And that's why LGPL is actually taking the Joomla mantra despite the initial accusations :) It balances the communities (L)GPL heritage with the need for a more permissive license to attract said developers

George
I think your assessment is right. Some interesting points I've learned as we've gone on (or that I didn't expect).

1. As the 'informal unofficial tally keeper' of this thread, when people changed their mind, the predominant shift was from GPL to LGPL (and I'm finding myself likely to do the same). I thought this would have been other way around.

2. Github rules. Adoption/absorption has more to do with how followed a project is on Github than anything else. For better or for worse, most folks pay no heed to the license. See 'Licensing of Software on Github: A Quantitative Analysis, by Aaron Wiliamson, Senior Staff Counsel, Software Freedom Law Center. http://www.softwarefreedom.org/resource ... nw/#/begin (use spacebar to flip through)

3. On Github, LGPL licenses are far less popular than GPL counter-parts (but a huge shift and dominance of more permissive licenses (i.e. MIT), likely explaining why LGPL is not more popular - and hence the discussion here considering MIT)

4. jQuery at one point went dual GPL/MIT, but removed the GPL in favour of pure MIT in 2006 in order to avoid confusion.

I think the bottom line is that we need to engage more dev's - I will get the Joomla! ACE Program started - next up.

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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by jodofin » Tue Mar 04, 2014 5:32 am

NivF007 wrote:
wilsonge wrote:And that's why LGPL is actually taking the Joomla mantra despite the initial accusations :) It balances the communities (L)GPL heritage with the need for a more permissive license to attract said developers

George
I think your assessment is right. Some interesting points I've learned as we've gone on (or that I didn't expect).
1. Drupal uses GPL 2 AND 3

2. Joomla didn't split from Mambo because of copyright issues.

3. I think the bottom line is that we need to engage more dev's - You will get the Joomla! ACE Program started - next up.

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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by Robert_Vining » Tue Mar 04, 2014 6:49 am

jodofin wrote:
1. Drupal uses GPL 2 AND 3
Drupal 8 is built on the Symfony 2 Framework, which is licensed MIT

http://symfony.com/blog/symfony2-meets-drupal-8

http://symfony.com/doc/current/contribu ... cense.html

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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by BenTasker » Tue Mar 04, 2014 11:01 am

mbabker wrote: Closing with my blunt opinion. The challenges to Joomla Framework adoption outside the Joomla project are the license and the community. How do you address those challenges?
I realise you guys haven't exactly been sat on your behinds ignoring the latter issue, but regardless of the license, it's something that's still going to need addressing in the future.

Changing the license definitely won't be a panacea, it may pull more devs into the fold, but in the wider context the (somewhat) broken relationship with the Joomla community will still be there. We'll still be in
the position of 'enjoying' some (or all) of the issues you highlighted.

This doesn't detract from the need to have the licensing discussion, but it's still a concern. If you guys feel you haven't been getting the support you should (I'm not going to disagree) then something needs to happen (either way) to try and increase that support (I'll hold my hands up, I could/should do more and am working on freeing up some time).

Masterchief wrote: The point is if the intent on disallowing permissive licenses is to prevent
proprietary usage, you need to think again and probably advocate for the AGPL.
And the death of Joomla! has just been foretold :D AGPL has it's places but they are very few and far between.


Masterchief wrote: In other words, I don't care what your philosophic position is, just be consistent.
Deliberately applying consistency to your own beliefs leads to the creation of a fundamental truth, not sure any of us would benefit from that.

I've (quite badly at times) laid out why I think GPL is the right move - some of those reasons are self-serving, definitely - but I'm not sure 'inconsistency' is a valid argument in a licensing discussion. The right license will vary by project, so it'd be impossible to get it right if you felt you had to staunchly maintain consistency. Basically the same argument as the one that says a good dev will pick the right tools for the task rather than insisting on writing everything in C.



dilbert4life wrote: MIT is not an option. Unless you want to do all the legwork to contact each and every dev who has ever contributed to the Framework and get their express permission, then it would be an option, but as it stands, it's not an option because it's not in the JCA, and the JCA contains all thenpossiblenlicenses which OSM has the legal right to re license the code under. Anything is off the table at this point.
Not to mention the forum thread that would result.....


Masterchief wrote: ... have new and pertinent questions relating to the question at hand
Actually, all power to you guys, I think most (if not all) questions that could arise have been answered somewhere within this thread. It'd be good to know what the plans are to help support increased adoption (assuming LGPL is adopted) but that's less a licensing question and more a marketing one. Changing the license will open the door to other developers, but if they're already comfortable with something else, how are we going to 'sell' the benefits of the JF beyond what's already being done?

I'm going to stop posting now (unless a new question pops into my head) as I don't think I'm adding much value to the conversation at this point. Whichever way the vote swings, hopefully this thread will have been enough of a wake-up call to get the community a little more supportive of the work you guys have been/are doing (and will hopefully continue to).

EDIT: Sorry, left word-wrap on so broke a few paragraphs!
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by JacquesR » Tue Mar 04, 2014 11:06 am

NivF007 wrote:BTW- If the decision comes down as GPL, I will happily start a working group with a focus on how we can tap into universities to collaborate on the Joomla! Framework. We can leverage the fact the are open-source purists and list the participating universities as contributors.

I can get started in earnest on it in mid-October (I teach paddle boarding during the summer months - while running a business - so summer is difficult to take on anything extra).

I think this would be the ultimate way to 're-invigorate' the group of code-contributors.

Anybody interested in this approach?
Niv, please don't.

You are not part of the Joomla! Framework team, and have not been asked by either that team, or the PLT (or any LT of Joomla for that matter), to reach out to Universities on behalf of the Joomla! Framework or the Joomla! Project.

You are appointing yourself in various roles. There's a difference between volunteering to help in a team, or being elected/added to a team or position, and to make up roles and teams for your own purposes.

---
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by Webdongle » Tue Mar 04, 2014 11:23 am

masterchief wrote:
Webdongle wrote:If by the word 'We' Amy meant the contributors to the Joomla project then yes she was correct. But the document she pointed to allows licences that the contributors to the Joomla project have not have not consented to.
If you sign the JCA you consent, if you don't sign, you don't consent and you are limited to minor contributions to the source code. ...
Signing the of JCA means someone has agreed to allow their contribution to be used with any of those licences. It does not mean they have agreed to continue contributing if the licence actually changed. It does not mean they consented to the due process (of making making a licence change) being altered.


masterchief wrote:... and you haven't really been able to grasp the concepts even when they are explained to you (we had this same problem when you were complaining that you didn't get "git" and "Github" - and you still didn't get it).
Actually I did get Git and Github and did have a pull request merged into the code(all be it a minor edit). My posts in the mailing lists were complaining that the complexity of Git would lose you a lot of bug testers. But that is is a different issue.

The issue is that Amy said something that implied that the OSM need authorisation from Joomla developers in respect of the type licence that Joomla uses. And that is far from off topic. It is pertinent to this discussion.
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by masterchief » Tue Mar 04, 2014 12:31 pm

@BenTasker, thanks for the comments. One thing is clear to me and that is we can't write a FAQ page about licensing and then expect the community to "just know it". We need to be reminding people about licenses at events, in the JCM, etc. Had we been doing it, the initial false and misleading commentary would have been shot down in flames by even a novice user.

It's also clear we need to better explain what the Joomla Framework is and how it fits into our ecosystem - in a way that the average user can understand. Let me assure you work has started on that (and we are going to need help - keep an eye out for a call-to-action on the Framework mailing list https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum ... -framework - shameless plug).

It is also clear that we were underprepared for the response (we should have had more answers on hand, we should have allowed for anonymous feedback to allow the timid majority to join in, etc and so on). I think it's fair to say everyone has learned a lesson or two, it's been a hard two weeks of debate, but I think all round the silver linings, and common sense will win the day.
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by BenTasker » Tue Mar 04, 2014 12:50 pm

masterchief wrote:@BenTasker, thanks for the comments. One thing is clear to me and that is we can't write a FAQ page about licensing and then expect the community to "just know it".
masterchief wrote: We need to be reminding people about licenses at events, in the JCM, etc. Had we been doing it, the initial false and misleading commentary would have been shot down in flames by even a novice user.
A JCM article (ahead of time) would definitely have been a good move, especially if it examined both sides (including some of the 'false' arguments).

masterchief wrote: It's also clear we need to better explain what the Joomla Framework is and how it fits into our ecosystem - in a way that the average user can understand.
Definitely, though that means more 'average users' need to be engaged to aid in that. We both know (probably all too well) that a dev writing documentation for the average user usually either overshoots (and seems condescending) or falls short and doesn't explain what we'd consider basic concepts.

masterchief wrote: Let me assure you work has started on that (and we
are going to need help - keep an eye out for a call-to-action on the Framework mailing list https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum ... -framework - shameless plug).
Expect to see me replying to threads there at some point, ta for the link.

masterchief wrote: it's been a hard two weeks of debate, but I think all round the silver linings, and common sense will win the day.
Let's face it, licensing aside, if just one more person thinks 'must get more involved' and sticks with it then there's a win. Wouldn't be what you guys are hoping for, but it'd still be a good step. The main thing for me, is that in a years time we still want to be in the position of being able to talk code over a few beers.
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by NivF007 » Tue Mar 04, 2014 1:36 pm

JacquesR wrote:
NivF007 wrote:BTW- If the decision comes down as GPL, I will happily start a working group with a focus on how we can tap into universities to collaborate on the Joomla! Framework. We can leverage the fact the are open-source purists and list the participating universities as contributors.

I can get started in earnest on it in mid-October (I teach paddle boarding during the summer months - while running a business - so summer is difficult to take on anything extra).

I think this would be the ultimate way to 're-invigorate' the group of code-contributors.

Anybody interested in this approach?
Niv, please don't.

You are not part of the Joomla! Framework team, and have not been asked by either that team, or the PLT (or any LT of Joomla for that matter), to reach out to Universities on behalf of the Joomla! Framework or the Joomla! Project.

You are appointing yourself in various roles. There's a difference between volunteering to help in a team, or being elected/added to a team or position, and to make up roles and teams for your own purposes.

---
Jacques
Let's be clear. I am 'appointing myself' as a person who will take the initiative to start a topic on the forum (something anybody has the right to do) - specifically what 'position' do you feel I'm electing my self for and what do you feel is my 'own purpose in doing so'?

PLT has been asked, BTW.

The only issue now is the working name of the initiative, as somebody has brought the issue with the name A.C.E might be a problem.

If you have something constructive to add, please do.

N

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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by wilsonge » Tue Mar 04, 2014 1:59 pm

Webdongle wrote:The issue is that Amy said something that implied that the OSM need authorisation from Joomla developers in respect of the type licence that Joomla uses. And that is far from off topic. It is pertinent to this discussion.
Yes Niv suggested using the MIT license. Amy, correctly, stated that as the MIT license isn't in the JCA the OSM would need to get authorisation of anyone who has contributed code to Joomla to change to a license NOT in the JCA (e.g. MIT).

Kind Regards,
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by Jenny » Tue Mar 04, 2014 2:18 pm

Perhaps I'm confused but from what I have been reading over the last few pages of posts, OSM doesn't have any say at all. The framework devs can rewrite the GPL code, license it LGPL and still call it Joomla. It appears the conversation is moot?
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by brian » Tue Mar 04, 2014 2:40 pm

Please stop the personal comments. This is about Joomla not individuals
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by BenTasker » Tue Mar 04, 2014 2:56 pm

brian wrote: Please stop the personal comments. This is about Joomla not individuals
Agreed

Jenny wrote:Perhaps I'm confused but from what I have been reading over the last few pages of posts, OSM doesn't have any say at all. The framework devs can rewrite the GPL code, license it LGPL and still call it Joomla. It appears the conversation is moot?
If OSM said "no you can't use LGPL" then the framework devs could rewrite the GPL code and release under whatever license they saw fit - they just couldn't do it under the OSM banner (and so couldn't call it Joomla, at least not without permission). The key bit there, being the rewrite, which would be quite a task to undertake (though if everyone who had contributed agreed, there'd be less of a rewrite, so if the current set of devs have written 88% of the code, it's only 12% that would potentially need attention).

I don't think anyone is seriously suggesting that they want to do that, and I don't doubt a lot of thought would be given to it before actually going that route (as opposed to a knee-jerk, we're off).

As Niv said, OSM decides which license can be used (the JCA details which can be switched to - others could be used, but it would entail a huge amount of work getting all contributors to agree, and coding around those who do not).
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by dilbert4life » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:20 pm

In my opinion, if OSM says no, it will be under one of the following reasons:

1) The Joomla! Project does not produce non-GPL code. If this is the reason, then there is a lot of work for OSM and the community to do in regards to the JCA and removing every non-GPL license from the list of allowed licenses and then getting the whole community of code contributors to re-sign the new JCA.

2) We cannot in good conscience re-license existing code, but new contributions can be under any of the approved licenses. If this is the reason, then new code can be licensed as LGPL, while existing GPL-licensed code is gradually removed or replaced.
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by Webdongle » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:30 pm

BenTasker wrote:...
Jenny wrote:Perhaps I'm confused but from what I have been reading over the last few pages of posts, OSM doesn't have any say at all. The framework devs can rewrite the GPL code, license it LGPL and still call it Joomla. It appears the conversation is moot?
If OSM said "no you can't use LGPL" then the framework devs could rewrite the GPL code and release under whatever license they saw fit - they just couldn't do it under the OSM banner (and so couldn't call it Joomla, at least not without permission).....
"If OSM said "no you can't use LGPL"" ... but Amy's phraseology suggested that the devs would authorise the licence that the OSM would say to use.
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Re: Feedback on potential Joomla! Framework LGPL license cha

Post by Webdongle » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:58 pm

dilbert4life wrote:In my opinion, if OSM says no, it will be under one of the following reasons:

1) The Joomla! Project does not produce non-GPL code. If this is the reason, then there is a lot of work for OSM and the community to do in regards to the JCA and removing every non-GPL license from the list of allowed licenses and then getting the whole community of code contributors to re-sign the new JCA.
...
Not at all. Because even if the OSM say no then that does not mean that they might decide to say yes further down the line. Therefore removing the possibility from the list is unnecessary.

dilbert4life wrote:...
2) ... but new contributions can be under any of the approved licenses. If this is the reason, then new code can be licensed as LGPL, ....
New contributions can be under any of the licenses that are listed in the JCA if:
They have signed the JCA
and
The OSM change the licence.

Signing the JCA acknowledging that their code can be used in any of the licences listed in the JCA
and
Giving the OSM a mandate to change the Joomla (framework and/or cms) licence.
Are two totally different and separate actions.
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