Wine, enthusiasts, businesses and the agony of the license

vinn vinn at
Sat Feb 9 12:48:46 CST 2002

IANAL, yada, yada

[nor can my involvement with Wine be considered anything more 
than minor]

Patrik wrote:
> Companies in this group have several choices:
> 1. Don't use new improvement in the main Wine tree, only resync
>    then a new major version of the application should be released.
> 2. Maintain a tree by themselves, continually resyncing in order
>    to make even minor version take advantage of new improvements
>    in the new Wine tree.

I just want to throw a couple of ideas out about using an LGPL 
license.  There's a lot of people with a heck of lot more at
stake than me, and ultimately they deserve to have their opinions
weighed more heavily than mine.  Ultimately these ideas stem from
the practice of licensing software rather than the theory (which
is where this thread was headed).

First, the LGPL doesn't really ever give a time frame for modifications
to be released back.  We can safely assume that it means "in a timely
manner", since in practice this is how it works.  I think we could
collectively agree that a company such as Transgaming could be allowed
a grace period in order to submit their modifications back.  Whether 
this is a week or a year can be debated.  If for no other reason than
to ensure clean code.  Now you may argue that a year is too long, but
keep in mind that the modifications do have to be released, and if it
takes them a year the amount of work required for a resync may impact
other operations.  

Second, the LGPL doesn't state how the modifications have to be released.
In practice this is done electronically via patch files or access to a
modified tree.  But there's no reason why the modifications couldn't be
released on handwritten post-it notes available by request only.  In
this manner there is a non-trivial amount of work required to integrate
the changes.  

Brian Vincent
vinn at

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