Re: "Scope" of licenses to be covered by SPDX


We do not discuss or put into question the FSF and OSI definitions of FOSS (I know them by heart, I understand the philosophy behind them and respect them). We try to make a definition of what should be the scope of software subject to the clause that we put in the contracts and it is broader than  open source traditional definition.  So perhaps the term “FOSS” is chocking you for that. But this is why we need to discuss and standardize. For me FOSS is not “Free and Open source Software” it is “Free and/or Open source software”; Now should we select another term in this context? I am totally open minded on this. Call it NPS (non-purchased software) or whatever, but even this wording will not fit with shareware for instance.



Michel.Ruffin@..., PhD
Software Coordination Manager, Bell Labs, Corporate CTO Dpt
Distinguished Member of Technical Staff

Tel +33 (0) 6 75 25 21 94
Alcatel-Lucent International, Centre de Villarceaux

Route De Villejust, 91620 Nozay, France

De : Mike Milinkovich [mailto:mike.milinkovich@...]
Envoyé : vendredi 22 juin 2012 19:25
À : Soeren_Rabenstein@...; RUFFIN, MICHEL (MICHEL); mjherzog@...; spdx@...
Objet : RE: "Scope" of licenses to be covered by SPDX


Re: " Out of this topic we just discussed (in my understanding) what could be a proper definition of “FOSS”. "


The Free Software Foundation (FSF) and the Open Source Initiative (OSI) are the two organizations which, in my opinion, define what FOSS is. Any attempt to define FOSS which do not take into account the collective wisdom and process that went into their respective license lists [1][2] would be a big mistake.


FOSS = Free and Open Source Software, which is the union of software which meets the definition of Free Software[3] and Open Source Software[4].


I have seen attempts in the past to expand the definition of FOSS beyond licensing to include other parameters such as open development processes and the like. They've all been spectacularly unsuccessful. There be dragons.


In the interest of full disclosure, in addition to by day job at the Eclipse Foundation, I am also a Director of the OSI.








Mike Milinkovich

Executive Director

Eclipse Foundation, Inc.

Office: +1.613.224.9461 x228

Mobile: +1.613.220.3223



twitter: @mmilinkov




Out of this topic we just discussed (in my understanding) what could be a proper definition of “FOSS”.


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