[legal-discuss] Licensing options for new project (Kolla) entering big tent

Radcliffe, Mark Mark.Radcliffe at dlapiper.com
Thu Jul 9 16:37:47 UTC 2015

Just to be clear, the GPLv3 does not require modification for its terms to apply. The terms of the GPLv3 apply upon distribution of the code.  The GPLv3 licensed code could not be part of the Technical Committee Approved Release because Section 7.2 of the Restated Bylaws provides that: "The Foundation shall distribute the software in the Technical Committee Approved Release under the Apache License 2.0 unless changed as provided in Section 9.1" so the requirement of the use of the Apache 2.0 license is not limited to code which is eligible for trademark use. Such code, Trademark Designated OpenStack Software, is designated by the Board and is a subset of the Technical Committee Approved Release. 

I remember a Board discussion about the use of copyleft licenses in dependencies and I think that the Board was generally against it, but I don't think that a decision was reached. I think that a discussion on this issue would be useful and I will discuss with Jonathan. 

-----Original Message-----
From: Richard Fontana [mailto:rfontana at redhat.com] 
Sent: Wednesday, July 08, 2015 12:38 PM
To: Stefano Maffulli
Cc: legal-discuss at lists.openstack.org
Subject: Re: [legal-discuss] Licensing options for new project (Kolla) entering big tent

On Wed, Jul 08, 2015 at 12:14:31PM -0700, Stefano Maffulli wrote:
> > I asked the TC if this approach would be in violation of the 
> > governance repository here:
> > https://github.com/openstack/governance/blob/master/reference/new-pr
> > ojects-requirements.rst
> [...]
> >  From the requirements " * Project must have no library dependencies 
> > which effectively restrict how the project may be distributed or 
> > deployed"
> I don't think that this requirement line you quote is preventing GPLv3 
> code in OpenStack because the GNU GPLv3 (and its predecessor v2) 
> doesn't restrict how the code is distributed or deployed. The license 
> provisions kick in when code is modified *and* is distributed with such modifications.
> The bullet before the one you quoted says:
>  * The proposed project uses an open source license (preferably the
>    Apache v2.0 license, since it is necessary if the project wants to be
>    used in an OpenStack trademark program)
> This to me means that code can be put under the /openstack/ namespace 
> in any open source approved license. Using Apache SL v2 will make it 
> possible to be legally distributed by the OpenStack Foundation as part 
> of the OpenStack 'core' definition.
> If the intention of the TC requirements is to prevent strong copyleft 
> licenses in openstack/ namespace maybe the bullets needs to be clarified.

I agree. If "effectively restrict[s] how the project may be distributed or deployed" was meant to allude to things like GPLv3 that is not obvious.


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