Questions tagged [open-source-definition]

Use this tag for questions about the definition of open source

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23
votes
2answers
4k views

Is the TeX typesetting system free and open source?

I recently opened the source code for the widely-used TeX typesetting system, and was surprised by the restrictive license I found: This program is copyright (C) 1982 by D. E. Knuth; all rights are ...
22
votes
1answer
5k views

SSPL and the Open Source Definition

MongoDB has decided to change the licensing of MongoDB Community Server, seemingly to prevent businesses from monetizing on their product without giving anything back: https://www.mongodb.com/press/...
21
votes
1answer
7k views

How to avoid being AWSed?

Elastic built the tool, AWS redistributed it and is dominating the market. Elastic is probably going to struggle and slowly die because they are bad at business. However, they built a great tool and ...
21
votes
3answers
517 views

Can a software license meet one of the FSF's and OSI's definitions without meeting the other?

I know that Free Software (this means the concept of free as in freedom, not software that does not cost anything) and Open Source have two distinct definitions. In practice though, they turn out to ...
20
votes
2answers
3k views

If an employee modifies a copy of a GPLv3-licensed open source library, is the modified copy intellectual property of the company?

There is a GPLv3-licensed open source library on GitHub which is used by the company I work for in a central component of the business. The business does not sell software, but only a manipulation of ...
16
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6answers
896 views

Is Open Source Software a subset of free software?

Is Open Source Software a subset of free software? I was recently asked this and realized I was unsure the exact answer. I understand that free software is not a type of open source software, but I ...
16
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2answers
3k views

So the GPL doesn't restrict the creator of the software in any way?

In another thread I started (Redhat buys Ansible), I am trying to figure out the economic value of a company transaction with respect to GPL'ed software. A few of the answers suggest that the owners ...
14
votes
3answers
818 views

Is the CC BY-ND an Open license?

CC BY-ND (Creative Commons Attribution No Derivatives) is a fairly restrictive license. It does not allow derivative works. The Wikipedia article on Creative Commons licenses says that it is not a ...
13
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4answers
3k views

Which licenses give me a guarantee that a software I'm installing is completely open-source, free of closed-source dependencies or components?

I have a question about free vs open source software that's more about practical implications from the user's perspective. I'll explain the mindset first before the actual question, so you can ...
12
votes
4answers
4k views

Is a software open source if its source code is published by its copyright owner but cannot be used without a commercial license? [duplicate]

Suppose I wrote a commercial program, and I publish its complete source code on my website. I retain all rights to the source code. No one gets any distribution or usage rights. They only have the ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

Why is the Non-Profit Open Software License (NPOSL) OSI-approved?

Recently I came across the Non-Profit Open Software License; tl;dr Legal says this about it: A variant of the Open Software License 3.0, this license requires that the organization using it is a ...
11
votes
1answer
2k views

Does "open source" always mean "open access"?

I will frame my question with a concrete example: HELYX is a software based on another software OpenFOAM. OpenFOAM is an open-source freely-accessible software distributed with GPLv3 licence. HELYX ...
11
votes
2answers
248 views

Does a license needs to be approved by the OSI to be an open source license?

The Open Source Initiative has created the Open Source Definition to define what open source is. Also it has set up a formal process to approve licenses to be open source. Now, does a license need ...
11
votes
1answer
416 views

Why is the Reciprocal Public License OSI-approved but not FSF-approved?

The Reciprocal Public License (RPL) is interesting in that it is the only license both OSI-approved and not FSF-approved. It is a copyleft license similar to GPL but with a "reciprocal" clause: ...
10
votes
4answers
3k views

Is "open software" the same as "open source" software?

A company sells a closed source software product - one that they actively also obfuscate - and market it as "open and flexible". Similarly there is no public issue tracking and when major exploits are ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

Understanding 4th point (restriction to distribute modified source-code) of Open Source definition

The 4th point of Open Source Definition - Integrity of The Author's Source Code: The license may restrict source-code from being distributed in modified form only if the license allows the ...
10
votes
3answers
149 views

Can any Firefox add-on be free software now that add-on signing is required?

Since the release of Firefox 48 on 2016-08-02, Mozilla Firefox will not run any add-on that has not been signed and verified by Mozilla. This means, for example, that a user cannot modify an add-on ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

How can I determine if some code I want to release as opensource is already licensed or proprietary?

Is there a way to analyze my code I want to release as opensource to see if it is / or has parts that are already licensed or proprietary?
9
votes
2answers
849 views

Telemetry in open source software?

Is it OK to embed some telemetry functions in an open source project or is it considered spying or privacy violating? I would like to connect my open source app to Microsoft Application Insights to ...
8
votes
1answer
3k views

Is it necessary to include MIT licenses for every project even if my code base is available in GitHub?

I use three MIT licensed projects in my source code. Do I need to include three copies of the MIT license (in different directories), or can I just include a single copy of the MIT license on the root?...
7
votes
1answer
350 views

Are discriminatory free licenses still free?

With free licenses, one cannot restrict who or how the software is used. Suppose that I construct a license that says: If you are not Steve you are permitted to license under A; if you are Steve ...
6
votes
1answer
338 views

Do non-discrimination clauses only count for my licensees, or also for me as a copyright holder?

The open source definition has a non-discrimination clause. From the annotated Open Source Definition: 5. No Discrimination Against Persons or Groups The license must not discriminate against any ...
5
votes
2answers
129 views

Could I run my own websites about projects I do not own?

I've found a few open-source software projects and I'd like to run my own websites regarding them, but not claiming to own them; just make a place where information and such can be found. I believe I ...
5
votes
2answers
128 views

Proper licensing of commercial SW including open-source by the same author

I have written from scratch some SW that I want to publish as open-source in Github while being the only contributor. I want to publish it under AGPL license. At the same time I want to use the ...
4
votes
1answer
817 views

Can open source exist without copyright?

I was asked a question in my law class: is it possible for open source software to exist without copyright protection? In the absence of copyright, could software still exist that satisfied the open ...
4
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1answer
263 views

Contradiction: Free "software" does not mean "noncommercial"

Citing the Philosophy of the GNU project: Free "software" does not mean "noncommercial". A free program must be available for commercial use, commercial development, and commercial distribution. ...
4
votes
1answer
298 views

What kind of license is Redis' RSAL (Redis Source Available License)?

The name would suggest it's not FOSS, but source available, which is a pretty low bar. But when I read about it, they seem to suggest that it's really only source available for specific use cases ...
4
votes
2answers
435 views

License for my Framework

I'm looking for a good license-model. I am developing a framework. These key points should be considered: Can: modify distribute commercial and private use sell it in modified/extended state ...
4
votes
1answer
294 views

Is there a free open source version of Android SDK available for use?

When I download Android SDK from https://developers.android.com, I am prompted to agree with Google's EULA. What should I use in order to avoid agreeing on these terms? I'm under impression that ...
4
votes
1answer
426 views

About of Apache 2.0 License

Hello everyone I'm going to use for my app ios the Google library "Tink" for cryptography End To End ... This library is released under an Apache 2.0 license, I wanted to know: Can I easily use an **...
4
votes
1answer
73 views

Google voided Corporate Contributor License Agreements

So when I tried to signed the CLA for my company, it failed and Google told me that "Please have an authorized executive sign this document. ..." To me it's not quite clear their definition of ...
4
votes
0answers
65 views

What's the best way to get started on open source projects [duplicate]

It's something I want to get started on and be able to contribute but I don't even know how or where to start. Many employers and recruiters ask if I have any experience with them, I just don't know ...
3
votes
3answers
174 views

Releasing the source code of a premium feature for another open program

If I use a compiled program/non compiled source code which is under a license that everyone has the rights do use and sell (Eg: GPL) and no one can deny any person to use or sell it and then I want to ...
3
votes
1answer
445 views

Is it wrong to call a software Open Source if it is using a license based on GNU GPL?

As an example, the real time operating system FreeRTOS is licensed under the FreeRTOS Open Source License which is based on a modified GNU GPL, the modification taking the form of an exception. The ...
3
votes
1answer
61 views

Some questions about LGPL v.3 (support, warranty…)

I participate in the development of a soft that will be distributed on a commercial basis. Question: 1. If I take the open-source Library (under LGPL v.3), will there be any obligations to support ...
3
votes
1answer
64 views

Recreating assets from closed source projects

Recently I'm working on a game, where I have created some asset from closed source project. To be honest I actually re-created assets similar identical to hill climb. Now if I use those or I use ...
3
votes
1answer
310 views

Naming a software after a person or a brand

I have been wondering about the copyright issues faced by software named after people or brands. As a Python developer, I wonder if there was any issue in Guido Van Rossum naming Python after the ...
3
votes
1answer
123 views

Distributing GPL binary which has no source and unresponsive author

I was found in a situation where some author published a binary which was widely used. Unfortunately he never shared the source despite marking the program as GPL (version not specified). Despite ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Why did Richard Stallman recommend not to use passwords? [closed]

In a short interview, Richard Stallman recommends not to put passwords on your wireless network. In the OS Revolution documentary he also mentions how he's disliked passwords ever since his job at MIT ...
3
votes
1answer
93 views

How to distribute third-party open source components?

When using an open source component (say, licensed under CDDL), we are required to distribute the source code for any components directly derived from the component. Is it acceptable to just provide a ...
2
votes
1answer
268 views

Is it in line with the DCO that a github sign-off needs and publishes full name + an email "that matches the commit author"?

This is a full copy from https://stackoverflow.com/questions/62969381/is-it-in-line-with-the-dco-that-a-github-sign-off-needs-and-publishes-full-name ######## Coming from Stack Overflow where a pseudo ...
2
votes
1answer
228 views

Does an FPGA design in Verilog / VHDL count as software or hardware in terms of copyright law?

If you have a programmable hardware device that incorporates hardware components (LEDs, switches, ADCs, DACs, batteries etc.) but is designed using Verilog or VHDL for the central FPGA design does the ...
2
votes
1answer
345 views

Open source code with no license [duplicate]

I am looking at working on improving an app that has not been updated for several months, add some features etc. In the description of the app on google play it says that the app is open source and ...
2
votes
1answer
51 views

Company Copyright and Eclipse Public License at the same time?

stackexchange helped me out in many ways and right now I'm stuck with the next problem. There is a company, my company paid, to extend an opensource code because we had no time. The original code is ...
2
votes
1answer
391 views

What are the most common open source license options and how do they differ? [closed]

I often hear about GPL variants, MIT, BSD and many other license options. A general Internet search reveals sites like "Top 20 licenses" or pages some licenses going out of fashion and others coming ...
2
votes
1answer
784 views

MySQL for Commercial Web Application

We have created a web application hosted on virtual machine for client access through web only, no distribution . The database we have used is MySQL Community Edition under GPL 2. The application is ...
2
votes
1answer
94 views

Can I put project using premium theme on github as public?

I am not very familiar with github and license copyright. I purchase metronic admin dashboard theme and built one project using it. So can I put this project on github as public so that others will be ...
2
votes
1answer
137 views

Can we edit Google Android sample project and create app

I searched all over the Internet but I was not able to find if anyone has raised this issue. I want to edit some files in an open source sample project provided by Google (change some methods and the ...
2
votes
0answers
44 views

Which license should I use

I want to share my android project on GitHub, allow everyone contribute to it but I don't want them to upload the project to play store without changing anything. Because I will be doing it. Why I ...
2
votes
0answers
21 views

How to start working on open source projects [duplicate]

I am about to graduate in May and have zero experience outside of school. The only thing worth putting on resume is I have been a TA for intro Java course for a year, and a 2 semester team project ...