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Re: RealNetworks' RTSP Proxy License

From: Joseph Reagle <reagle@w3.org>
Date: Fri, 7 Sep 2001 13:02:58 -0400
To: Jeffry Smith <smith@mclinux.com>, license-discuss@opensource.org
Cc: www-archive@w3.org
Message-Id: <20010907170258.8777787662@policy.w3.org>
On Friday 07 September 2001 12:01, Jeffry Smith wrote:
> A key point that I've found on Open Source - you place the license on
> REDISTRIBUTION, not use.  Remember that, under standard Copyright, the
> user has the right to use the software, but not redistribute new or
> modified copies.  The Open Source licenses are what enable that.  Thus,
> by only specifying redistribution, you can mimic the GPL, and say, in
> effect "You don't have to agree with this license, but nothing else gives
> you the rights included.  Use of these rights indicates acceptance of
> this license."

I've noted this distinction between an acceptance of a license 
(unilateral?) and contract (bilateral?) before [1]; it's an interesting 
(and perhaps) important distinction that I don't completely understand yet.

However, based on this thread I went and had a look and most of the OSI 
license *do* restrict use:

Redistribution and use in source and binary forms, with or without 

Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to 
use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell 
copies of the Software

(a) to use, reproduce, modify, display, perform, sublicense and distribute 
the Original Code (or portions thereof) with or without Modifications, or 
as part of a Larger Work


[1] http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/gpl.html
5. You are not required to accept this License, since you have not signed 
it. However, nothing else grants you permission to modify or distribute the 
Program or its derivative works. These actions are prohibited by law if you 
do not accept this License. Therefore, by modifying or distributing the 
Program (or any work based on the Program), you indicate your acceptance of 
this License to do so, and all its terms and conditions for copying, 
distributing or modifying the Program or works based on it. 
Received on Friday, 7 September 2001 13:03:04 UTC

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