[DOCS] Licenses FAQ (was Re: port of prevayler)

Doug Way dway at riskmetrics.com
Tue Feb 18 21:59:39 UTC 2003

The GPL versus Squeak-L versus MIT comparisons are definitely Frequently Asked
Questions which are not covered well on our current FAQ.

I just added these two questions to the FAQ page: "Can I release my Squeak
application under a license other than Squeak-L? How does Squeak-L compare
with other popular licenses such as MIT, GPL, etc.?"

But I didn't add the answers.  Someone should try to answer these, or at least
point to or quote the appropriate messages in the squeak-dev archives.  Also,
the page could probably be cleaned up a bit.  See:


- Doug Way

goran.hultgren at bluefish.se wrote:
> Hi all!
> Marco Paga <mail at marco-paga.de> wrote:
> > Question: The Squeak license is that everybody can use the code but only
> > changes in the base image of squeak should be made public. Right? :-\
> Well, "should" is probably not the right word - I think you meant
> "must".
> > But I want people who extend my code to give their enhancement back to
> > the community. I write code for the community and won't see any money
> > for that. So i want other people doing it the same way if they profit of
> > my work.
> Yes, I know - the normal GPL argument. And I fully understand it and
> also like it for many different kinds of software. But this is not about
> what you or I like or wants. I just tried to explain the problems of GPL
> in the Smalltalk world and more specifically in the Squeak world.
> To be more specific: If Prevayler is under GPL then I wouldn't dare
> using it for anything because I could then possibly find myself in
> breach with GPL.
> > This license reflects most my thoughts about what open source is. Source
> > must be always opened for everybody who wants to extend his horizon :-) .
> Well, there are numerous interesting nuances here. Some argue that
> MIT/BSD is "more free" and of course some argue that GPL is "more free"
> etc. I have participated in some of these discussions and it is simply
> different views on the matter. No point in arguing. So I respect your
> view.
> > btw: There is a big difference between real goods and soource code. I
> > write something that helps me and after that I can copy this source to
> > everybody all around the world without loosing something. If somebody
> > uses my work as a base for further work s/he can do the same. Is it too
> > much??
> I am not sure what you mean with this last question. Perhaps you asked
> me "Is it too much too ask, that the software 'remains free' as FSF
> likes to put it." Well, my opinion doesn't really matter here.
> The problem remains - GPL technically doesn't work with image based
> systems. Even Richard Stallman has verified this! Just search the
> Squeak-dev archives for postings by Andrew Greenberg (our local license
> guru) for more reading on that matter.
> ...and then of course different communities have different "cultures".
> The Smalltalk community and especially Squeak has a more MIT/BSD-like
> culture. We share code with each other, and if someone can use it in a
> product - fine. It is simply a different approach. And many of us like
> it because we actually use Squeak to produce products (or at least we
> are trying :-) - if Squeak was under GPL this would in many ways not
> work.
> > yours Marco
> regards, Göran

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