Re: License of an open source license text

Alexios Zavras

You might want to consider using something more general, like LicenseRef-FSF-license-text or even LicenseRef-license-text, to use the same for all license files...

-- zvr

-----Original Message-----
From: Spdx-legal@... <Spdx-legal@...> On Behalf Of Richard Purdie
Sent: Thursday, 18 June, 2020 13:20
To: Steve Winslow <swinslow@...>
Cc: SPDX-legal <Spdx-legal@...>
Subject: Re: License of an open source license text

On Wed, 2020-06-17 at 20:24 -0400, Steve Winslow wrote:
Hi Richard, thanks for the detailed explanation -- I think I
understand your use case better now.

What I'd suggest would probably be that if you do want to represent
this, one way might be to use a "LicenseRef-" identifier. This is
compatible with (and defined in) the SPDX spec, and REUSE also
includes it as the recommended way to represent licenses that aren't
on the License List. Here are a few links with more details:
(search for
rs-in-source-files/ (scroll to
So then you could represent it by something like "LicenseRef-GPL-3.0-
license-text", or whatever else you wanted that starts with
"LicenseRef-" and uses alphanumeric plus hyphens and periods. And then
just indicate somewhere in the documentation what that ID represents.
That way it would still be SPDX-compatible.
Thanks, so to summarise, the answer is that:

a) there are no SPDX identifiers for the license of a license text
b) there are no plans to add any
c) we can create our own namespace as mentioned above and remain

So we can use "LicenseRef-GPL-3.0-license-text" and similar and move forward from there.

If others ask, it would be good if we can at least try and use a common convention for it too. This is now in the mail archives which should help. We'll recommend this as a standard within the Yocto Project.

Thanks for the help/pointers!



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