[MonoDevelop] Licensing concerns.

Christoph Wille christophw@alphasierrapapa.com
Fri, 16 Jul 2004 08:37:48 +0200

Asking for clarifications by the FSF is "in bad taste"? If you are more 
competent in (GPL) licensing issues than the FSF, so be it. But we will 
publish their findings here once we receive them.

Until then (which I hope is rather soon), consider our position to be 
different than yours on this matter.


At 08:20 AM 7/16/2004, Todd Berman wrote:
>On Fri, 2004-07-16 at 07:41 +0200, Christoph Wille wrote:
> > We intentionally linked only messages that were sent on this mailing list
> > to not misquote you or anybody else, I invite everyone to check the PDF 
> out
> > to see the "misrepresentation" you allege.
>I will save them the time.
>3rd paragraph, 1st sentence:
>"MonoDdvevelop (http://www.monodevelop.com) is a fork of SharpDevelop
>branching off release 0.94 of SharpDevelop"
>it was 0.98, but this is minor, just informing.
>Same paragraph, next sentence:
>"MonoDevelop MonoDevelop now wants to change license to the X11 license
>which led to some debate between the developers of both teams."
>Never once was this suggested, and many times it was explained that
>MonoDevelop would continue to be GPL until/unless it was rewritten
>completely (which was also noted to be highly unlikely (as in, not gonna
>happen unlikely)). All that was mentioned was that *MY* personal
>contributions, the IP that I own, would be relicensed to the MIT X11
>license, but distributed under the terms of the GPL. There was also some
>questions if we should require future contributions to be submitted with
>similar constraints, and if we should look at getting past contributions
>licensed in the same way. Again, MD would stay GPL, and the #D codebase
>is GPL.
>2nd page, 1st bullet point:
>"...without explicitly choosing a license, code derived from GPL'd code
>is 'license free' seems incorrect."
>All I stated was that it was not explicitly licensed, which is bad in
>general. I would assume everyone agrees.
>2nd page, 2nd bullet point:
>"A change in licensing of GPL'd software is not possible without the
>permission of the copyright holders of all code involved from our
>I never even suggested that the software's license would change. Read
>above. Just that my contributions would. And last time I checked, I was
>the sole copyright holder of my contributions.
> >
> > Secondly, a minor mistake - don't take German language for German company.
> > Here in Austria we also speak German as a matter of fact. Oh, and by the
> > way: my company only acts as the copyright holder - all assignments 
> will be
> > tranferred to Mike once he chooses so. This is only legal protection for
> > Mike, because he is a student and with Germany being heavy on 
> not-so-easily
> > defendable injunctions, I decided to offer a legal shield. Which is cheap,
> > because my father IS a lawyer.
>I apologize for thinking ASP was a German company, I now understand that
>it is an Austrian company.
>And I am happy to hear that your father is a lawyer, I hope that
>profession is as lucrative in Austria as it is in America and Canada.
> >
> > I thought we we were handling this issue (which even might turn out to 
> be a
> > non-issue) above-USENET flamewar level, but your recent blog post has me
> > thinking that I might be wrong on assuming that we deal with this issue
> > professionally.
> >
>It already has turned into a non-issue. As I stated in my blog, as far
>as MonoDevelop is concerned, it is a moot point. And as far as dealing
>with this issue professionally, I don't think that you and your team has
>been in the least bit professional over this, and 'MonoDevelop Brother'
>thread that happened here a couple weeks ago. Keeping that thread alive
>here was just in poor taste.
>Had ASP wished to be professional, they would have not reached for the
>FSF within 24 hours of this being mentioned, they would have attempted
>to contact me off the list, which was not done, as I recall, I attempted
>to contact you off the list, and was handled very tersely.
>Taking your concerns to the FSF is just in poor taste. Regardless of
>what the FSF says, it is just their opinion, and not actually a concern
>of mine. The FSF is not, will not, and can not be the judge, jury and
>executioner in this discussion. But, I am just a developer, not a
>lawyer, so I guess maybe the MonoDevelop team needs more word wranglers,
>and less code wranglers to deal with this in the future. And again, as I
>said before, you can stop wasting the FSF's time, as it is a moot
>And what I said on my blog was just that. What I said on my blog. It is
>my space, in which I can say whatever I choose to say. And after just
>re-reading it, at no point do I feel I flamed anyone. I merely expressed
>my exasperation at the 'professional' decisions reached by the ASP team.
>If you feel that any piece of it is inaccurate, please contact me off
>this list, and I will listen to your objections, and either edit out the
>inaccuracies, or post small footnotes from you that explain exactly why
>I am wrong, unprofessional, and just generally a bad guy. This isn't the
>first time I have been told that I kill kittens, and if I do things
>right, it won't be the last time.
> > Final words: we submit to the outcome from FSF analysis, so why doesn't
> > everyone here hold their flame-breath and stick to "we have a disagreement
> > on licensing we want to resolve professionally". To clear up
> > misconceptions: we are not threatening anybody, we don't intend to mess
> > with somebody's IP, it's just that this discussion has come to a point
> > where it should be resolved professionally - so other OS projects don't
> > have to go through this process but can build on the results.
>We don't have a disagreement on licensing, at all, we have a
>disagreement on if the GPL allows code under a different, but still GPL
>compat, license to be bundled with GPL code given that the entire
>product is released under the terms of the GPL.
>As far as I, and the MonoDevelop team is concerned, this issue is
>closed, done, finished, etc. There is no need for anymore discussion on
>it, as we have decided how to best move forward, and will concentrate on
>code wrangling, not word wrangling. We have software to develop.
>Good night,