Re: Helix Player virtual team meeting
- From: Rob Lanphier <robla real com>
- To: Julien MOUTTE <julien moutte net>
- Cc: Lee Braiden <jel ntlworld com>, Ryan Gammon <rgammon real com>, gnome-multimedia gnome org, gnome-devel-list gnome org, gnome-list gnome org, desktop-devel-list gnome org, gstreamer-devel lists sf net, licensing open helixcommunity org
- Subject: Re: Helix Player virtual team meeting
- Date: Fri Dec 12 03:46:09 2003
Julien MOUTTE wrote:
really sorry about answering to that many list, but i d like to clear
I invite people to check the license for themselves and see if it is in
fact open source.
The licence reads:
"Contributor hereby assigns to RealNetworks full ownership in all
worldwide common law and statutory rights associated with the
intellectual property rights, copyrights, copyright application,
copyright registration and moral rights in the Contribution to the
extent allowable under applicable local laws and copyright conventions.
Contributor agrees that this assignment may be submitted by RealNetworks
to register a copyright in the Contribution. Contributor retains the
right to use the Contribution for Contributor's own purposes subject to
whatever license is applicable to the Contribution, if any (e.g. RPSL).
This provision will enable RealNetworks to efficiently protect the
copyright in the Helix DNA on behalf of the entire community."
To me that means that we lose ownership of the code and Real is free to
close it or patent it at any point they wish.
Which part of the Open Source Definition do you reckon the RPSL is in
Note that the OSI has certified the RPSL.
Quoting the portion of the RPSL that you quoted out of context is very
misleading. For starters, I encourage everyone to look at the whole
"2. Permitted Uses; Conditions & Restrictions. Subject to the terms and
conditions of this License, Licensor hereby grants You, effective on the
date You accept this License (via downloading or using Covered Code or
otherwise indicating your acceptance of this License), a worldwide,
royalty-free, non-exclusive copyright license, to the extent of
Licensor's copyrights cover the Original Code"
"2.3 Subject to the terms and conditions of this License, Licensor
hereby grants You, effective on the date You accept this License (via
downloading or using Covered Code or otherwise indicating your
acceptance of this License), a worldwide, royalty-free, perpetual,
non-exclusive patent license under Licensor's Applicable Patent Rights
to make, use, sell, offer for sale and import the Covered Code, provided
that in each instance you comply with the terms of this License."
So, regardless of the fact that RealNetworks, as the Licensor, can
create proprietary applications, you have the right to continue to use
the open source version.
There are plenty of examples of where this is happening with GPL
software today. For example, much of the code that Raph Levien wrote
was facilitated by this funding model (http://www.artofcode.com/)
You'll note that this clause makes relicensing in *any* form far more
practical. For example, it's taken years for the Mozilla project to add
GPL and LGPL as an option, because they didn't have this clause in the
MPL (only in the NPL). Ironically, for the code they licensed under the
NPL (which they got far more grief from the community about), they were
able to relicense immediately.
The GStreamer team is pushing hard to get an integrated and
distributable media framework and we are currently trying to fund the
development of Theora codec so that we can get a completely free and
open solution for multimedia streaming/playback.
Actually, RealNetworks has funded the Xiph Foundation in the past:
...and you should keep your eye out for more announcements on this front.
RealNetworks has a long history of being as open as the business climate
will prudently allow, and I don't see any reason why this won't continue.
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