Re: [Bug 1292] New: What is the correct license expression for a project with an additional patent license?
Many thanks for your generous reply, and for sending so quickly.toggle quoted message Show quoted text
Forgive me if I'm behind on general discussions about the purpose and
function of SPDX expressions. I understood their purpose rather more as
a coding system for what terms purportedly apply than a way to state a
fully formed legal conclusion.
I suppose I tended toward this view especially given that American
lawyers are known to differ on what various standard licenses actually
do. The license plus additional patent grant situation exacerbates these
problems, I think, in a few ways:
1. There likely won't be any record of acceptance of either the
BSD-3-Clause terms or the patent grant terms. Defendants will claim
to have accepted whatever licenses grant protection they need once
hauled into court.
2. The existence of the additional patent grant might very well affect
an American court's view of what (if any) patent license is implied
by BSD-3-Clause. General principles of contract interpretation will
read both licenses, as contemporaneous agreements on the same subject
3. The patent license and BSD license are separate files in the source
code repository, and I think it clear that clause 1 of the BSD
license does _not_ require redistribution with a copy of the
additional patent license.
4. On the other hand, the additional grant is entitled "Additional
Grant...", and the read-me file and other documentation repeatedly
mention the application of both licenses.
One upshot is that a program designed to check SPDX metadata against a
white list of licenses may very well want to assess the "BSD-3-Clause"
in (BSD-3-Clause) differently than in (BSD-3-Clause AND/OR/WITH
If the answer here is to allow variants with each of AND, OR, and WITH,
does that mean that the additional patent grant should hypothetically
seek both a license identifier and a license exception identifier?
Better to roll the BSD-3-Clause and additional patent grant into one
"Facebook BSD License", akin to the Apple MIT variant (AML)?
On Mon, Jun 15, 2015 at 12:38:02PM +0100, Sam Ellis wrote:
Subject: [Bug 1292] New: What is the correct licenseI will take the opportunity to offer an opinion to the forums on this
Kyle Mitchell, attorney
San Francisco, California
+1 (415) 864 - 9913