Re: Module proposal: Empathy for GNOME 2.22

On Thu, 2007-09-27 at 10:03 +0100, Martyn Russell wrote:
> I wouldn't re-license it

[there is tons of both context and history here, which the rest of this
thread covers. On the topic of licencing, however:]

I must admit that as an advocate of software freedom and as someone who
works for a firm that releases its work under the GPL, I am not adverse
to the idea of a GNOME library being licenced under the GPL only.

I realize full well that there is a certain fraction of the wider
universe of people who use the GNOME platform who are using it under the
pragmatic terms of the LGPL to write their proprietary software. Some of
those companies contribute to our community their IP and their
employees' time, and that's fantastic.

I hugely respect, however, the expression that has been made by people
who wrote software under the GPL that they wish it to remain so
licenced. That's their call, and it is effectively final.

Meanwhile, as has been pointed out, the various IM-enabling components
being discussed are something that GNOME has been hunting after for some
time now. So if formally endorsing Empathy (when ready, etc) means GPL
licenced libraries start working their way in to the higher levels of
the stack, I think that would be entirely consonant with the aim of the
GNOME community to produce an outstanding free software Desktop and
related technologies.

[And it's not like the lower levels of the stack are about to be
re-licenced in more restrictive terms to meet some puritanical streak, I
just don't think that people considering contributing new libraries etc
should feel forced into not using the GPL if that's what they want to


Andrew Frederick Cowie

We are an operations engineering consultancy focusing on strategy,
organizational architecture, systems review, and change management
procedures: enabling successful use of open source in mission
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