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"C.M. Connelly" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Mailing list for the LaTeX3 project <[log in to unmask]>
Wed, 3 Jul 2002 09:01:29 -0700
text/plain (71 lines)
"FM" == Frank Mittelbach <[log in to unmask]>

    FM> I'm happy if somebody takes up the torch and gets (a
    FM> variant of) LPPL approved by any such body. We tried in
    FM> 2000 and the results where so frustrating and (in my
    FM> personal opinion) unprofessional that I'm not willing to
    FM> get personally involved into it again, at least not
    FM> initially.

I'm not sure which effort Frank is referring to.  I'm aware of
two, one of which involved a discussion with someone at
``'', which is a company that sells packaged free
software and has nothing to do with the free-software or
open-source movements.  That discussion apparently degenerated
into a flamewar between RMS and the people running
``'' and thus led nowhere for the LPPL.

There was another attempt made by Russell Nelson from,
on the Open Source Initiative's [1] license-discuss list.
(Archived at [2].)

That discussion included objections to the distribution
restrictions (as I have noted), and some quibbles about wording
and punctuation, but little more.  There was no participation in
the discussion by anyone from the LaTeX Project, and the
discussion died out after concluding that the LPPL had problems.

If you want to get the license approved, or at least ensure that
it says what you want it to say and that you can justify
everything in it, then someone (or several someones) from the
Project are going to need to champion it against critics.  I
recommend debian-legal, as I believe that if the folks there are
happy, the license would sail through the OSI approval process.
You might prefer dealing with OSI directly.

But someone is going to need to take the time to have the
discussion in public, with people who don't completely understand
the intent of the license and will poke and prod at it to expose
its weaknesses.  No matter what the outcome, hearing what other
people think the license means based on its text should help you
come up with a stronger, more coherent statement.

I strongly recommend reading

   1. The Open Source Definition (based on the Debian Free
      Software Guidelines)

   2. The Debian Free Software Guidelines

To get an idea of what people are likely to criticize and why.


 Man cannot be civilised, or be kept civilised by what he does in his
            spare time; only by what he does as his work.
                             W.R. Lethaby
  C.M. Connelly               [log in to unmask]                   SHC, DS

[1] Open Source Initiative

[2] [log in to unmask]
    thread on the LaTeX Project Public License