Re: License text for LGPL-3.0

Max Mehl

Steve, thank you so much for summarising the discussion, and the Legal
Team for working on the topic. I regret that I did not join the call,
but from what I see you basically got everything covered anyway.

~ Steve Winslow [2022-01-10 22:33 +0100]:
* The license-list-XML repo includes plain text versions of each license
[4] which are primarily used to test whether the license's XML template
matches the expected text.

* Some downstream projects, organizations and individuals, including REUSE
[5], use these plain text license files as a source for obtaining and
reproducing the license's text, e.g. to insert into a repo's license
documentation. Although this wasn't an original design goal for the License
List, some folks are doing it and finding value in it.
Off-topic: would there be a better way for REUSE to fetch the full
license texts?

Personally, I'm +1 to make these changes:
As a REUSE team member, I am obviously in favour of these changes as

* It doesn't resolve all possible ambiguities about "did you mean
everything in this repo is LGPL, or that some things are LGPL and some are
GPL?" But neither does the current state of affairs. Using SPDX short-form
license IDs and/or standard license headers solves this. So I don't see
this as particularly significant to this specific proposal.
As also mentioned by Alan, this is a separate problem. For REUSE
however, this is no big deal as you can tell from the name of the
license text file (e.g. LICENSES/LGPL-3.0-only.txt) that the file
should cover the LGPL license. If someone had also file under GPL, thios
would just mean that another license text file
(e.g. LICENSES/GPL-3.0-only.txt) would exist.

*Things that are off-topic for this thread*:

* whether LGPL-3.0 should have been an "exception" rather than a "license"
(see [1], [2] and [3])
FYI, in the discussions we've had with FSF about this topic, this was
also our proposal but it has been rejected by them.


Max Mehl - Programme Manager - Free Software Foundation Europe
Contact and information: | @mxmehl
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