This page includes a concatenation of the reports and resolution proposals made by the VP of Legal Affairs to the ASF Board of Directors, and may be of interest to committers wishing to follow the progress and history of legal policy issues.
The following reports are included in this page. The complete board meeting minutes are also available.
Update Legal Affairs Committee Membership (approved)
Change the Apache Vice President of Legal Affairs (approved)
Allow redistribution of MPL- and NPL-licensed executables (approved)
Allow product dependencies on LGPL-licensed libraries (tabled)
Allow product dependencies on LGPL-licensed libraries (tabled)
Allow redistribution of MPL- and NPL-licensed executables (tabled)
5. Additional Officer Reports 2. Apache Legal Affairs Committee [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 2 ----------------------------------------- Attachment 2: Status report for the Apache Legal Affairs Committee Active month, nothing requiring board attention beyond a passing mention of staffing. Summary: internal: LGPL optional library for testing CouchDB (OK) DOM4J (BSD style license, accepted) JSR 173 license (replaced with an ALv2 equiv) Protocol Buffer License (verified as BSD) Unicode data license (ICU: OK) MSV license (category X: due to FOU) License Headers question (dealing with BSD) Question as to when CCLAs are required (QPid) OASIS license of XSDs (not separately licensed?) OLIO fragment cache license (MIT) ICLA required for student under contract? (wouldn't hurt) Use of Prolog (the language) (OK) Abstract question on documentation (need specifics) outside: Permission to reuse our CLA form itself (granted!) Question as to whether the ECCN "conveys" to commercial users (answer: exemption may not apply - consult a lawyer) General question as to whether ASF code can be sublicensed commercially (can and does) Hypothetical Discussion between Bruce Perens and Larry Rosen (over my head) Referred elsewhere: Two separate potential violation of an ASF Trademark (to PRC) Advice for book authors (to PRC) IP-clearance question (to incubator)
5. Additional Officer Reports B. Apache Legal Affairs Committee [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 2 Sam confirmed that an open list was not a problem at this time, and noted that he is pleased with the sharing of the load; while Henri and Larry take on bigger shares than most (thanks!), nobody dominates and plenty of people contribute.. ----------------------------------------- Attachment 2: Status report for the Apache Legal Affairs Committee While traffic has picked up from last month, absolutely none of it should be of any concern to the board. Brief summary: * General questions on public domain and fair use * A question about a previously approved license (zlib/libpng) * Two questions on IP clearance, one quick and one more involved, both forwarded to the incubator * A JSR spec contained obsolete licensing terms (Geir quickly dove in) * An inquiry on trademark considerations, including the project logo and the ASF feather from committers on an ASF project working on a book. * An internal discussion on open letters. The list also attracts questions from users. While it is not something that we are set up to do (or, in fact, a service we intend to provide), it has not proven to be a problem in practice. Discussions of this nature from the past month: * Request for advice on a project desiring to use the Apache License and depend on code licensed under the GPL. * A webapp developer asked a question about the MySQL license * A developer of an application on sourceforge asked about how to structure his LICENSE file given that his project is based on an ASF project * A general question about defensive publication as a way to protect against patent trolls. * A general question on internal use of Apache projects
5. Additional Officer Reports 2. Apache Legal Affairs Committee [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 2 ----------------------------------------- Attachment 2: Status report for the Apache Legal Affairs Committee Very quiet month, nothing requiring board attention. Highlights: Naming discussion on JSecurity. Probably would not have given approval to that name in the first place, but given that the name has been in use for four years without an issue being raised, there isn't consensus on requiring a change. That being said the naming discussion was an inevitable bikeshed. Discussion of whether a given W3C license was category 'B' or 'X'. Given that the code in question was dual licensed with BSD, the question was moot. A discussion about a different W3C license and the policy of not allowing non-OSS code in SVN wandered off into nowhere as hypothetical discussions are want to do. There was a similar discussion about PDF CJK fonts, and it appears that the direction there will be to dynamically download the data vs polluting SVN. A question about dealing with the US Government was handled by Larry off-list.
5. Additional Officer Reports 2. Apache Legal Affairs Committee [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 2 People are encouraged to follow up on the first issue on legal-discuss. ----------------------------------------- Attachment 2: Status report for the Apache Legal Affairs Committee Most significant thread has the unfortunate subject line of "use of proprietary binaries". I say unfortunate, as it is unduly prejudicial. The essence of the pragmatism behind "category B" is to identify artifacts whose licenses, while different than our own, don't affect the ability of us developing our code under our license. As long as the dependency is clearly marked and we are not distributing these artifacts, we should be good. Related questions such as whether such artifacts can be checked into SVN, etc. should be examined in terms of infrastructure burden and potential to increase confusion, and not excluded as a blanket matter of policy. The context for the above is optional external APIs and compliance test suites. While we would all love for these to be open, that's not a requirement. The line in the sand is whether or not usage of such affects our ability to develop our code under our license. By contrast, redistribution of PDF CJK fonts, for which the license clearly states that the "contents of this file are not altered" was greeted warmly, albeit with a separate discussion about patents. Other threads: Does working on Sun RI automatically "contaminate" developer, and preclude them from working on ASF project? Answer: not in general, though specific PMCs may have specific rules in place depending on the nature of the project. Lenya website redesign - ensuring that the contributions are under the appropriate license. Obtaining licenses for testing purposes - original question dealt with WebSphere, but wondered off to TCKs. Branding question ("AskApache") referred to PRC. Continued discussion about Google Analytics. No consensus that there is a clear issue yet. A naming question for JSecurity lead to the inevitable bikeshedding...
5. Additional Officer Reports 2. Apache Legal Affairs Committee [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 2 ----------------------------------------- Attachment 2: Status report for the Apache Legal Affairs Committee It would be helpful to obtain a Notice of Allowance from Robyn in order to pursue registering the SpamAssassin Trademark. Sebastian Bazley updated the mailbox drop information on CCLAs to reflect our Wells Fargo lockbox. Discussed documenting privacy policies w.r.t. Google analytics and interpreting "internal use" as our project mailing lists. Parallel discussion occurred on site-dev. Advised Facelets to preserve NOTICEs and not to modify copyright claims in files that they copy. Jira item created for documenting the process for choosing names for ASF projects. Looks promising. Once again, a discussion of making section 5 of the Apache License, Version 2.0 more explicit via mailing list messages surfaced. Thankfully, it died quickly. My feeling is that what we have works for us for now, and shouldn't be changed unless there is a specific issue. A company offered Lucene access to archived blog data. There was a discussion concerning us hosting a copy of this, but this made some people uncomfortable w.r.t. potential copyright violations. Discussed w3c's copyright-documents-19990405.html. Overall doesn't look open source friendly, but we may be open to further discussion of checkin of unmodified sources with appropriate documentation. Reviewed Oracle's proposed revised JSR301 draft license
5. Additional Officer Reports 2. Apache Legal Affairs Committee [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 2 ----------------------------------------- Attachment 2: Status report for the Apache Legal Affairs Committee 4 JIRA requests opened, 3 closed; all related to how to deal with "one off" licenses. Continuing discussions on Google Analytics and legal options related to the JCK impasse. Otherwise, a pretty quiet month.
5. Additional Officer Reports 2. Apache Legal Affairs Committee [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 2 ----------------------------------------- Attachment 2: Status report for the Apache Legal Affairs Committee Things continue to run smoothly. I'm pleased with the number of active participants. An abstract question was asked about an ability to commit to a project given exposure to prior ideas from a previous employer. In general, such a situation causes us no major concerns, though the situation may vary based on the specific projects and specific employers in question. PDFBox was originally BSD licensed and obtained software grants from all of the primary authors. A question was asked regarding small contributions from people who they are no longer able contact. Given the size of the contributions in question, the original license, and the fact that reasonable efforts were made to locate such people, it was determined that this was not a concern. A FAQ was added that older versions of Apache software licensed under Apache Software License 1.0 are still licensed as such. Creative Commons Share-Alike Attribution version 3.0 license has been approved, provided the materials in question are unmodified. Previously, only the 2.5 version had been approved. A JIRA was opened on documenting release voting procedures. No owner. Larry helped resolve an issue where a company wished to rewrite our CCLA. Our policy is that we don't accept modified ICLAs or CCLAs. SyntaxHighlighter (LGPL) was approved for use on people.apache.org pages. Nobody seems to know the licensing status of BEA's StAX implementation, so most projects are simply routing around it. Larry has volunteered to register SpamAssassin trademarks. Given that the PRC and the SA PMCs are OK with this, if the board approves the expenditure, I'll tell him to proceed. David Crossley has produced a first draft of a project naming document. He's been on the list for over a year, and starting in July of this year has picked up his participation. Routine copyright/notice questions from Felix, CouchDB, JAMES and the Incubator. RSA's implementation of MD4/MD5 says one thing in their licensing headers and a quite different thing on their IETF IPR statement. I think we are covered, but we still need to settle how to document this properly. Bluesky inquired about moving away from some (unspecified) C++ Standard library implementation to STLPORT, presumably for licensing reasons. Everything I have heard to date indicates that we would be comfortable with either implementation. Google Analytics continues to be explored. Justin expressed an opinion that, while a bit stronger than I recall the board expressing, is one that I'm quite pleased and comfortable with: namely that we start from a presumption of data of this type being open to all, and work backwards from there -- making closed only what we must. A discussion has just started on the legal implications of contests involving prizes. If the prizes themselves are donated, and are substantial, we may have to consider such as targeted donations.
5. Additional Officer Reports 3. Apache Legal Affairs Committee [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 3 Jim asked if the board should request a status update regarding the 3rd party license policy. Sam indicated that this was not necessary based on the areas of consensus already are published on the web site, and the items being worked appear in JIRA. No action was taken. ----------------------------------------- Attachment 3: Status report for the Apache Legal Affairs Committee While comments were made on a half-dozen or so JIRA issues, none were either created or closed this month. I believe that this process is working smoothly, and does not warrant board attention. Notable discussions that occurred during this month: As reported elsewhere, Microsoft clarified their position on their Open Specification Promise. As near as I can tell, everybody feels that this completely resolves the issues surrounding the upcoming OOXML support by POI. The division of labor between the PRC, the incubator, and the Legal Affairs Committee continues to confuse people. My understanding is that the PRC is responsible for enforcing our claim to names, the incubator is responsible for IP clearance (including names), and the Legal Affairs Committee helps respond to claims made against the ASF. A GPL license question surfaced -- this started out with Xapian which is licensed under GPL v2 and confusion over what the FSF claims of "compatibility" with the Apache License means. Eventually this discussion wandered off into the territory of hypotheticals. GPL v2 remains on the ASF's restricted list (a.k.a. Category "X"). By contrast, syntax highlighter (licensed under the LGPL) was approved for the limited purposes of non-essential enhancement of online documentation. There was a brief discussion on "blanket" grants and "commit by proxy". This was resolved by citing the relevant sections of the ICLA which has explicit provisions for the enablement of submitting code on behalf of a third party. There was a brief discussion as to whether an ICLA sufficient when a person may have been exposed to ideas and alternate implementations from a previous employer. Our position is yes. Individual PMCs are welcome to set a higher bar for themselves. A permathread re-erupted: when are Apache License Headers needed? The general guidance is that they should be added whenever practical, but only where practical. There is an ongoing discussion about notice requirements when code is reused from other projects.
5. Additional Officer Reports 2. Apache Legal Affairs Committee [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 2 A brief discussion was had concerning ASF committers and members participating as Expert Witnesses. This is a decision that only the individual in question can make for themselves, but if there is any concern that there might involve an ASF vulnerability, then the individual is requested to include the ASF's legal VP and counsel in the discussion. ----------------------------------------- Attachment 2: Status report for the Apache Legal Affairs Committee Resolved issues: * Documentation about the Legal Affairs Committee has been added to the web site (primary source: board resolutions) * Cobertura reports can be included in Apache distributions * Yahoo! DomainKeys Patent License Agreement v1.2 does not raise any concerns. Significant Discussions: * Permathread about policy issue about shipping LGPL jars reoccurred. again this month. * We are Revisiting whether or not there should be a JIRA checkbox concerning whether or not there should be a "Grant license to the ASF" checkbox and what the default should be. Other: * Received another inquiry from the owners of the Abator trademark.
5. Additional Officer Reports 2. Apache Legal Affairs Committee [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 2 ----------------------------------------- Attachment 2: Status report for the Apache Legal Affairs Committee Another month with little controversy. At this point /legal/resolved.html contains the bulk of the content from the draft 3party text upon which there is wide consensus. This includes the discussion of category 'A', 'B', and 'X' licenses. Henri has a real talent for proposing text upon which people can find common ground. The wiki that was previously set up at my request is not seeing much use. Relevant documents that were previously there (as well as on people.apache.org home directories) have been migrated to the website proper. A JIRA area has been established for tracking legal issues, and this has resulted in a lot of activity and issues moving to closure. Two major areas of future focus: Nearer term is a sincere desire in a number of areas to be more proactive about obtaining suitable licenses for potential patents. This has caused problems as patent licensing issues are not as clear cut as copyright or trademark issues. I'm comfortable having the Legal Affairs Committee making the call that, for example, WSRP4J and POI pose acceptable risks for the foundation, and downstream help PMCs mitigate those risks should these assessments prove to be unfounded. Longer term, clarifying and documenting the various notice requirements (NOTICE, LICENSE, README) needs attention.
5. Additional Officer Reports B. Apache Legal Affairs Committee [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 2 ----------------------------------------- Attachment 2: Status report for the Apache Legal Affairs Committee A fairly quiet month. The iBATOR trademark infringement issue seems to have been resolved satisfactorily. Glassfish has now corrected the license issue with prior versions of their product (as of the last board report, they had only addressed the latest version). Andy Oliver is continuing to work quietly with myself and ASF council to see if we can identify and resolve his concerns with the Microsoft funding of Sourcesense to implement OOXML. WSRP4J appears to be in a roughly analogous place. There are no known actively enforced patents by either IBM or WebCollege that apply to this code, but a desire to preemptively and proactively get a license agreement. As indicated in the incubator report, nobody on the Legal Affairs Committee has expressed any concern with the changes proposed by Roy for the procedures for IP Clearance. Questions on compatibility with various licenses continue to pop up from time to time. No questions on third party licensing issues arose during the past month.
5. Additional Officer Reports B. Apache Legal Affairs Committee [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 2 7. Special Orders A. Update Legal Affairs Committee Membership WHEREAS, the Legal Affairs Committee of The Apache Software Foundation (ASF) expects to better serve its purpose through the periodic update of its membership; and WHEREAS, the Legal Affairs Committee is an Executive Committee whose membership must be approved by Board resolution. NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the following ASF member be added as a Legal Affairs Committee member: Craig Russell <email@example.com> Special order 7A, Update Legal Affairs Committee Membership, was approved by Unanimous Vote of the directors present. ----------------------------------------- Attachment 2: Status report for the Apache Legal Affairs Committee Sun has restored Apache License headers to the Jasper code with Glassfish V3. Craig Russell was instrumental in making this happen. I feel this issue is now closed. In related news, the Legal Affairs Commitee voted to add Craig to the committee, and it appears as resolution 7A on today's agenda. From time to time, I see a number of smaller items that come up on the legal mailing lists go unaddressed. I intend to continue to pursue expanding the Legal Affairs Committee membership. We received more information on the trademark concern, and this has resulted in Apache iBATIS beginning the process of renaming Apache iBATIS Abator to Apache iBATIS iBATOR. The Legal Affairs committee participated in a number of JCP and Harmony related discussions. This is already adequately covered by the report from the VP of JCP. The third party licensing policy continues to remain a draft and despite not being made into a policy, is still useful as a set of guidelines and hasn't prevented us from making meaningful progress on actual requests from podlings and PMCs, such as the request as to how Buildr is to treat dependencies covered under the Ruby license. There has been discussion regarding WSRP with respect to patents. While it isn't clear that there is a patent that reads on WSRP, but a member of the portals PMC sent a request inquiring as to how certain patents would be licensed by IBM and Web Collage. Upon review, the consensus seems to be that the agreement presented to us by Web Collage is not sufficient for our needs. POI has a situation where a committer has stated his intent to revert commits which were made several months ago based on a feeling that there may be patents which read on the code in question. Portions of the legal site are in flux, and meta discussion as to when and who can update the site occur from time to time. This is normal and healthy.
5. Additional Officer Reports A. VP of Legal Affairs [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 1 ----------------------------------------- Attachment 1: Report from the VP of Legal Affairs The third party draft has been a significant distraction. This document serves a quite useful purpose -- as a guide. Shortly after this month's board meeting, I plan to publish a short document describing how it is useful as a guide and identifying a few places where hard distinctions it attempts to make are overreaching and will not (yet) be enforced. Meanwhile, focus will return to concrete, tangible, and near-term decisions. The first two of which which will be resolved this week deal with code licensed for use "in the creation of products supporting the Unicode Standard" and an optional LGPL "deployer" distributed in source form. Other activities: * WSRP4J is looking into potential patent claims * Ongoing crypto notice work * Discussion on maintenance of the year on copyright notices * Question as to whether we would allow projects to dual license (answer: no) * Discussion of various open specification pledges, particularly Microsoft's * OSGI bundle requirements will require ServiceMix to create, maintain, and distribute a small amount of CDDL licensed descriptions. * Continuing confusion over the split between the NOTICE and LICENSE files, this needs to be dealt with by the Legal Affairs Committee * Fielded a question from a non-profit that wanted to base their license off of ours. * A growing list of open legal questions, mostly related to third party licensing. * Glassfish still hasn't restored the Apache License headers to Jasper files, despite some encouraging words that they were going to. Yet another letter was sent to Simon Phipps and the legal contact at Sun he provided me with.
5. Additional Officer Reports A. VP of Legal Affairs [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 1 Approved by General Consent. 7. Special Orders E. Update Legal Affairs Committee Membership WHEREAS, the Legal Affairs Committee of The Apache Software Foundation (ASF) expects to better serve its purpose through the periodic update of its membership; and WHEREAS, the Legal Affairs Committee is an Executive Committee whose membership must be approved by Board resolution. NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the following ASF member be added as a Legal Affairs Committee member: Henri Yandell <firstname.lastname@example.org> Special order 7D, Update Legal Affairs Committee Membership, was approved by Unanimous Vote. ----------------------------------------- Attachment 1: Report from the VP of Legal Affairs Last month, I mentioned a potential trademark infringment issue that was brought to our attention. I contacted the individual requesting more information, and have not heard back. Until I hear more, I have no plans of pursing this further. Sun continues to ignore our request that the licence headers be restored on the portions of Glassfish. I have sent a third request (the first was in September) that Sun follow the FSF's recommendations on this matter. If Sun continues to drag their feed on this matter, it is time to explore other options to get Sun to comply. While this work has been ongoing for some time, this month there has been a marked uptick in the export classification activities and general awareness of these ECCN related issues. Most of the efforts of this month were on trying to refine the ASF's Third Party Licensing policy, primarily by attempting to create an informal poll. I seeded this with three hypothetical positions, and mostly people were divided into two camps. One camp didn't see much of a dividing line between the first two positions, but clearly saw position three as distinct and reacted negatively towards it. The other saw little difference between positions two and three, but reacted equally negatively to position 1 as the first camp did to position 3. A bare minimum that I believe that we can achieve ready consensus on is a policy that all sofware developed at the ASF from here on is to be licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0, and that we will take no actions that limit our ability to distribute our software under this license. Roy has indicated that this may not have been the policy in the distant past, but as near as I can tell, it has been the way that we have been operating for quite some time now, hence the conclusion that this should be able to readily gain consensus. One world view is that that bare minimum is not enough. One can argue that it makes little sense if our software is licensed under a pragmatic license if that sofware is entangled with dependencies that effectively eliminate all the pragmatic aspects of our license. The other world view is that our software is, well, soft; i.e., maleable. Our licensees are welcome to modify, combine, and optionally contribute back to our code bases. Furthermore, no matter how hard we try, our licensees are operate under a variety of different constraints or have a differing interpretations of license compatibility. Choosing between these two world views is difficult; but given that the former can only be executed if there are ample exceptions for "system" or "soft" dependencies -- concepts that are both undefinable and all too open to gaming -- clearly the latter is easiest to understand and administer. Or there is a belief that a "spec" from an industry consortia and with no independent implementations somehow makes copyright and patent issues less relevant. In any case, add to all this the evident divide, and the first world view becomes not only harder to understand and administer, it becomes absolutely unworkable. Simply put, an excemption for "system" dependencies that is based on a "I'll know it when I see it" policy doesn't work if a substantial portion of the people who may be drawn upon to express an opinion on the subject simply don't believe that any such distinction is either necessary or even makes sense as a policy. Therefore it appears that the only workable policy is one where we continue to require PMCs to compile a comprehensive set of LICENSEs to accompany each of our releases so that our licensees can make an informed decision. That, and perhaps to we can increase our efforts to educate PMCs as to the effects such dependencies have on community size. While this approach is workable, it is one that may be difficult to reverse. Hence, a slow and cautious approach is warranted. Should there be any as of yet unexpressed feedback, now would be a good time to provide it. I have reviewed the minutes for the meetings of 2005/06/22 and 2007/03/28 establishing the VP of Legal Affairs and the Legal Affairs Committee respectively, and believe that no board resolution and/or explicit approval is required for the Legal Affairs Committee to proceed on this matter.
5. Additional Officer Reports A. VP of Legal Affairs [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 1 Request was made that legal/status be updated. Approved by General Consent. ----------------------------------------- Attachment 1: Report from the VP of Legal Affairs The requested FAQ additions have been completed and posted. These additions did attract quite a few comments of support, and everybody had more than ample time to comment. I've seen no negative fallout as of yet of these additions. I mention this because these additions were initially controversial, but my impression is that over time some of the participants simply got less vocal rather than converted. Jason Schultz has left his staff attorney position at the EFF. Fred von Lohmann of the EFF has agreed to support us in his place. We have been informed of a potential tradmark infringment issue. I shoud have more details by the next meeting. There is a backlog of items that need to be addressed, preferably in parallel rather than serially. Rather than waste report time on what I perceive to be the biggest item, namely competing the Third Party Licensing policy, time permitting, I've added a discussion item in the hopes that we can come to a quick consensus on the approach. If quick consensus isn't achievable here, then the hope is that this will serve as a heads up so that the interested parties can participate in the discussion on legal-discuss. Other items in the backlog: Third Party Licensing: Minor update to to add OSOA as category A Additional updates to cover notices of optional dependencies (log4cxx, apr) Need a policy on whether depencencies on Ruby Gems are permissable (Buildr) WSRP4J licensing issues (Portals) Fork FAQ
5. Additional Officer Reports A. VP of Legal Affairs [Sam Ruby] No written report submitted. Brief discussion on the possibility of doing a BOF at ApacheCon.
5. Additional Officer Reports A. VP of Legal Affairs [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 1 Approved by General Consent. ----------------------------------------- Attachment 1: Report from the VP of Legal Affairs After an extended quiet period, I thought I would collect up a few updates to the website, but that re-awoke the discussion. What's cool is that this time around, there actually are more people than Doug actually proposing actual wording. I'm convinced that we are continuing to make forward progress. Backlog of items include following up with Sun on following the licensing terms for Jasper, and a "fork FAQ".
5. Additional Officer Reports A. VP of Legal Affairs [Sam Ruby] Brief discussion concerning the possible need to change the bylaws. We decided not to pursue such a change. Approved by General Consent. ----------------------------------------- Attachment 1: Report from the VP of Legal Affairs Relatively quiet (and short) month. I believe that we are making progress on the Y! proposed additions to the FAQ, and should be able to close shortly. Short summary of the key issue: while the ASF as a whole does not confer any official status to "subprojects", this proposed FAQ would officially recognize that a PMC may, in fact, produce a number of independent "products". Simon Phipps forwarded to me a writeup by the FSF on how to retain appropriate copyright headers on works derived from non-GPL codebases and incorporated into GPL codebases. I posted this link on legal-internal, and it didn't provoke any objections, so I asked Simon to follow these instructions on the Jasper/Glassfish code. I will follow up to ensure that this is done.
5. Additional Officer Reports A. VP of Legal Affairs [Sam Ruby] See Attachment 1 Approved by General Consent. ----------------------------------------- Attachment 1: Report from the VP of Legal Affairs * Continuing to work on Yahoo! patent scope FAQ. * Updated web page concerning Apache License and GPL compatibility * Updated 3rd party policy, resolving Geronimo and MyFaces issue * Participated in two call with ASF council regarding JCK/FOU issue * Continuing to work with Sun over ASF license code issues in Glassfish My goal continues to be to delegate more of this. If necessary, I will recruit more people onto the legal committee in order to make this happen.
5. Additional Officer Reports A. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff Schmidt / Henning] See Attachment 1 Approved by General Consent. 7. Special Orders E. Update Legal Affairs Committee Membership WHEREAS, the Legal Affairs Committee of The Apache Software Foundation (ASF) expects to better serve its purpose through the periodic update of its membership; and WHEREAS, the Legal Affairs Committee is an Executive Committee whose membership must be approved by Board resolution. NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the following ASF member be added as a Legal Affairs Committee members: Sam Ruby <email@example.com> Special order 7E, Update Legal Affairs Committee Membership, was approved by Unanimous Vote. F. Change the Apache Vice President of Legal Affairs WHEREAS, the Board of Directors heretofore appointed Cliff Schmidt to the office of Vice President, Legal Affairs, and WHEREAS, the Board of Directors is in receipt of the resignation of Cliff Schmidt from the office of Vice President, Legal Affairs, and WHEREAS, the Legal Affairs Committee has recommended Sam Ruby as the successor to the post; NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that Cliff Schmidt is relieved and discharged from the duties and responsibilities of the office of Vice President, Legal Affairs, and BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that Sam Ruby be and hereby is appointed to the office of Vice President, Legal Affairs, to serve in accordance with and subject to the direction of the Board of Directors and the Bylaws of the Foundation until death, resignation, retirement, removal or disqualification, or until a successor is appointed. Special order 7F, Change the Apache Vice President of Legal Affairs, was approved by Unanimous Vote. ----------------------------------------- Attachment 1: Report from the VP of Legal Affairs As mentioned in last month's report, I wish to resign as VP of Legal Affairs. The Legal Affairs Committee has discussed possible replacements over the last month and have reached consensus on Sam Ruby, who is not currently on the committee. Therefore, I have prepared two resolutions for the board to vote on: one to add Sam to the committee (being a board/executive committee) and one to have him replace me as VP. There are no other issues requring board attention this month.
5. Additional Officer Reports A. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff Schmidt / Greg] See Attachment 1 Approved by General Consent. ----------------------------------------- Attachment 1: Report from the VP of Legal Affairs On May 31st, the FSF released its "last call draft" of the GPLv3. In this draft and its associated press releases, the FSF prominently states that there is no longer a concern about the Apache License being "incompatible" with the GPLv3. The compatibility issue is describing whether they see a problem with an Apache-Licensed component being included within a larger GPLv3-licensed work. This is what they no longer see a problem with. Of course, there would still be much concern and debate about the licensing restrictions of a larger Apache-Licensed work that included a GPLv3-licensed component. The only other issue to report is that the legal affairs committee has been up and running for well over a month. In fact, I coordinated approval of the FSF's proposed GPLv3 wording with the committee (although sadly didn't plan far enough advance to coordinate this report). I will soon be asking the committee for nominations and an election of a new VP of Legal Affairs, with a proposed resolution before the Board by next month's meeting.
5. Other Reports A. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] See Attachment 1 Cliff indicated that, assuming the current "incompatibility" between GPLv3 and AL 2.0 is resolved, he does not foresee any further potential conflicts. Approved by General Consent. ----------------------------------------- Attachment 1: Report from the VP of Legal Affairs As I mentioned in my post to the board@ list shortly after last Board meeting, the FSF's third discussion draft of GPLv3 included a note that GPLv3 would not be compatible with the Apache License due to the indemnification provision. Both Larry Rosen and I have been in touch with the FSF and SFLC and expect this statement of incompatibility will soon be reversed without any change in the Apache License. The Board approved my resolution to establish a Legal Affairs Committee at last month's meeting. However, I have been lame in getting things started due to a shortage of available time in the last few weeks. I'll start getting the ball rolling this week.
5. Additional Officer Reports A. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] I have proposed a new Legal Affairs Committee to distribute the current legal affairs workload to a coordinated group ASF members, to assign responsibility for legal policy deliberation and decision making to the same group under the supervision of the board, and to provide a structured means of participation and familiarization for those interested in taking over the Legal VP job one day. The resolution is on the agenda. It is currently written as an Executive committee, but we can discuss if that is best. I've worked with Geir on issues related to the JCK licensing problems, but I will let him report on that. 8. Special Orders C. Establish the Legal Affairs Committee WHEREAS, the Board of Directors deems it to be in the best interests of the Foundation and consistent with the Foundation's purpose to create an Executive Committee charged with establishing and managing legal policies based on the advice of legal counsel and the interests of the Foundation; and WHEREAS, the Board of Directors believes the existing office of Vice President of Legal Affairs will remain a valuable role within the Foundation and would benefit from the creation of such a committee. NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that an ASF Executive Committee, to be known as the "Legal Affairs Committee", be and hereby is established pursuant to the Bylaws of the Foundation; and be it further RESOLVED, that the Legal Affairs Committee be and hereby is responsible for establishing and managing legal policies based on the advice of legal counsel and the interests of the Foundation; and be it further RESOLVED, that the responsibilities of the Vice President of Legal Affairs shall henceforth include management of the Legal Affairs Committee as its chair; and be it further RESOLVED, that the persons listed immediately below be and hereby are appointed to serve as the initial members of the Legal Affairs Committee: Cliff Schmidt Davanum Srinivas Garrett Rooney Geir Magnusson Jim Jagielski Justin Erenkrantz Noel Bergman Robert Burrell Donkin Roy Fielding William Rowe Special Order 6C, Establish the Legal Affairs Committee, was approved by Unanimous Vote.
5. Additional Officer Reports A. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] The CLA FAQ proposed at last month's meeting was reviewed by our counsel. Small changes were made and an additional Q&A was added to clarify the future patent claims issue. The FAQs have been posted to legal-discuss where there is some discussion to make a very minor clarification. In short, I believe this issue is pretty much resolved. A pretty bad trademark violation was reported, which I forwarded to the PRC and assisted them in an initial draft (with a review through counsel).
4. Officer Reports E. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] The only issue to report this month is the patent license FAQ. Following the plan I suggested in October, I've taken the FAQ proposed by Doug and agreed to by Roy (which addresses the concern for consistency with Roy's public statements on the topic while he served as ASF Chairman) and asked our counsel to review and advise. Barring any legal concerns from counsel, I recommend posting this FAQ. Incidentally, the question part of the FAQ is nearly identical to the one proposed in our September meeting; however, the answer no longer has the problem raised by some directors (that it was attempting to answer more than the question).
4. Officer Reports E. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] CLA UPDATE: I sent an update to legal-discuss last week to let everyone know that the plan is to publish a document that describes the original intention behind some of the ambiguities in the CLA and then to discuss the idea of a new version. Roy has agreed to write the "original intention" doc based on what statements he had made about the CLA's interpretation while he was ASF chair. GPLv3 COMPATIBILITY: The SFLC contacted me about the latest proposed changes to the patent licensing in the next draft of GPLv3. I am reviewing now to ensure these changes would still allow Apache-Licensed works to be included in GPLv3-licensed works. STANDARDS LICENSING: I reviewed the BPEL specification patent licenses for Apache ODE. The licenses would not be acceptable by the ASF; however, there do not currently appear to be any patents to license. So, I see no problem with ODE implementing the BPEL spec. Another spec reviewed was the Yahoo-submitted IETF RFC on DomainKeys. Noel submitted this to legal-internal by Noel for review during ApacheCon US. I reviewed and commented on it there; while not ideal, it appears reasonable and should not hold back our development. My analyses for both BPEL and DomainKeys was approved by our legal counsel on legal-internal.
4. Officer Reports E. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] Cliff reported that work is continuing on the "crypto export" clarifications for use within the ASF. Also being worked on is the standards licensing. Cliff noted that SenderID is covered under the Open Specification promise, and therefore removes any restrictions on use.
4. Officer Reports E. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] Cliff reported that during ApacheCon, the CCLA issue was further discussed with many people, especially Roy and Doug Cutting. Both Roy and Doug were happy with the approach taken and Roy committed to "writing up" what his intents were with the CCLA, so that misinterpretation of the letter and spirit of the CCLA no longer exists. Cliff indicated his desire to create a sort of Legal Committee, similar to the PRC or Security Team, to allow for a wider range of volunteers to help with the various legal issues and questions still being worked on. His hope is also that this will provide an opportunity for him to resign from the VP of Legal Affairs position after a period of time. Cliff reported that a number of Universities and Colleges have contacted him regarding their own efforts in creating suitable licenses for their open source educational software. Cliff suggested that the ASF possible provide feedback and insights regarding our experiences with the AL as well as the iCLA and CCLAs.
4. Officer Reports E. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] CRYPTO EXPORT DOCS: This work has been complete for over a month and projects are now starting to use the docs/process. At this stage it still requires me to work closely with the project to ensure they understand the docs, but the system is working. This will scale better as the docs are improved through experience. STANDARDS LICENSING: The standards patent covenant that I have mentioned giving feedback on over the last couple reports was made public about one week ago: the Microsoft "Open Specification Promise". While it is not perfect, I believe it should not block PMCs wishing to implement covered specifications. USPTO/OSDL's OSAPA: The Open Source As Prior Art initiative met in Portland, OR, last week for two days. I was able to join the group for the second day to learn a little about what is being planned. Will follow-up with email to board@. THIRD-PARTY LICENSING POLICY: Haven't gotten to this yet, but hoping to make minor revisions and make enforcement approach clear in doc (as described in previous reports) and then call it final, and ideally have it included in same email to committers as alerts on src header and crypto docs. (No change since last month) OSS PROJECT CODE MOVED TO ASF: When an incubating project's initial code base is submitted to the ASF, our CLA requires that "work that is not Your original creation" must be submitted "separately from any Contribution, identifying the complete details of its source and... conspicuously marking the work as "Submitted on behalf of a third-party: [named here]". This presents a problem when the code base is an existing OSS project with intermingled IP from various sources. One solution I've seen in the past is for the multiple authors to jointly sign the same grant; however, due to a few problems with this approach, I've worked with one set of initial contributors to create a script that uses svn blame/log and a mapping file (svn id or a rev # --> legal owner) to output an exhaustive set of annotations to satisfy this requirement. PATENT LICENSING IN CCLAS: I am late on getting this report done. I'm still having discussions with our lawyers and other members of the open source community on a daily / weekly basis. The goals of the report are to detail the ambiguities in the patent language of the current CCLA and to suggest that the board consider options, such as specific clarifications, revisions, and supplementary processes. These can be discussed at today's meeting if the board wishes; in addition, Doug Cutting would like the board to consider an FAQ to address some aspect of the CCLA's ambiguity. Cliff also reported that he will commit to having the 3rd Party issues complete by ApacheCon Austin.
4. Officer Reports E. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] LICENSING HEADER: About to move the deadline back to Nov 1st due to my slowness in getting out an email to committers@ pointing to new policy. However, many projects are already switching over from pointers on legal-discuss. CRYPTO EXPORT DOCS: Lots of work with APR and especially James on fine-tuning the format for the email reports and web page. Have updated the docs to reflect this. Pretty much done now -- just need to include this on the committers@ email (see above re: license header). THIRD-PARTY LICENSING POLICY: Haven't gotten to this yet, but hoping to make minor revisions and make enforcement approach clear in doc (as described in previous reports) and then call it final, and ideally have it included in same email to committers as alerts on src header and crypto docs. (No change since last month) PATENT LICENSING IN CCLAS: I've continued to do some research and have some discussions with various companies and other open source organizations on this topic. I still hope to have a report comparing the options by the end of this month. STANDARDS LICENSING: A large software company will be soon be releasing a new patent license (actually a promise not to sue), under which several specifications will be covered. Much of our feedback has been incorporated into the latest draft. I expect we will be satisfied with the final result (TBA this month).
4. Officer Reports E. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] LEGAL HOME PAGE: Have created new legal home page with links to docs relevant for users and committers. Also posting and linking to these legal reports for interested committers to track progress. Please let me know if there are any concerns about this. Will publicize the legal home page and its links on Friday in email to committers@. LICENSING HEADER: The final version is now posted, linked from the new legal web page: apache.org/legal. Email to committers will go out on Friday. CRYPTO EXPORT DOCS: A nearly final version of this is posted including a lengthy FAQ from various dev-list discussions. Last step is to work with dreid on project- specific RDF files that build final required web page. Hoping to have this also done and in email to committers on Friday. THIRD-PARTY LICENSING POLICY: Haven't gotten to this yet, but hoping to make minor revisions and make enforcement approach clear in doc (as described in previous reports) and then call it final, and ideally have it included in same email to committers as alerts on src header and crypto docs. PATENT LICENSING IN CCLAS: I've tried to keep the board aware enough of this discussion over the last 2-3 months to jump in as any director sees fit; however, recent discussions on board@ lead me to believe that I should request this to become an item of new business, rather than wait for another director to inquire more about it. I suggest a brief conversation on the topic today, followed by a more detailed presentation of the concerns of each side of the issue at some point in the near future. SFLC LETTER ON ODF: After clarifying with SFLC that we did not want their letter to represent an "Apache position" on ODF nor did we want our name used in any PR on the subject, I agreed to the text of their letter. Since publishing the letter several weeks ago, they appear to have honored my requests completely. STANDARDS LICENSING: I continue to have conversations with vendors on how they can improve the licensing of their essential patent claims for specifications that Apache would consider implementing. I'm actually seeing some progress/willingness to revise from vendors.
4. Officer Reports E. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] LICENSING HEADER: I sent a summary of the resolution passed at last month's meeting to the legal-discuss list and am compiling a short FAQ based on questions from that thread. The summary and FAQ will be linked from a new apache.org/legal/ home page by the end of the week, and send a notification of the posting to committers@. I originally stated that the new header would need to be implemented on releases on or after August 1, 2006, but will push that date back one month, since I was slow to get this out to all committers. PATENT LICENSING IN CCLAS: There continues to be some degree of controversy over my statement on how the CCLA patent license should be interpreted. I continue to state that the patents are licensed for both the contribution and combinations of the contribution with the continuing evolution of the project. In other words, the ASF is not interested in contributions with strings attached (strings = restrictions on what it can be combined with). SFLC LETTER ON ODF: The SFLC has asked us to review a draft statement on the legal encumbrances of the OASIS ODF specification. If we agree with the draft, they would like to issue a statement that they are representing the positions on two of their clients, the ASF and FSF.
4. Officer Reports E. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] LICENSING HEADER: I have submitted a resolution for the Board's consideration to set a new policy for source code headers. In brief, the headers will no longer include any copyright notice, only a licensing notice and a mention of the NOTICE file for copyright info. The NOTICE file will include the ASF's copyright notice, in addition to other required notices. Copyright notices in third-party components distributed within ASF products will not be touched. CRYPTO EXPORT POLICY: I have posted a crypto policy at http://apache.org/dev/crypto.html. The policy should answer most of our questions in this area, but will be gradually enhanced over time. GPLv3 COMPATIBILITY: After a close review of the first draft of GPLv3, I brought up potential incompatibility issues with the Apache License to the GPLv3 discussion committee that I serve on. The FSF's counsel hopes these issues can be addressed in the next draft. As I've said before, both the FSF and the SFLC continue to be unwavering in their dedication to ensure GPLv3 is compatible with Apache License v2. PATENT LICENSING IN CCLAS: I've spent a lot of time with one particular corporate legal staff lately with their questions of whether the CCLA implies that the set of all possible patent claims being licensed can be known at the time of contribution. It's obvious why a corporation would want the answer to be affirmative; however, such an answer would not protect the project's work from patent infringement claims by a contributor regarding how their contribution is combined with other things. It may be worth revising the (C)CLA language to make this more clear. ELECTRONICALLY SUBMITTED AGREEMENTS: Now allowed. See the Secretary's report. LICENSING AUDITS: I work closely with the Eclipse Foundation's IP Manager, who continues to inform me of apparent inconsistencies and inaccuracies in the licensing of ASF products. I've been asking PMCs to address these issues as they come up, but what we really need is an internal audit on each product to get these problems fixed. Before we can do that, we need complete documentation on the things an audit should look for and how they should be corrected. I will likely make this a priority for the "Docathon" at ApacheCon EU next month. THIRD-PARTY IP: Due to the issues above, I've neglected to make the few remaining changes to the draft licensing policy doc and publish the official version. As I mentioned last month, I intend to tell PMCs that all new products MUST conform to the policy, but that all existing products that do not currently conform need to only take one action over the next six months: report where/how they are not conforming so that the practical impact of the policy can be better understood without yet requiring substantial changes. The philosophy behind this "impact evaluation period" is that the policy was primarily intended to document the mostly unwritten rules today and to choose one rule when multiple exist across the ASF. Now that I've cleared the license header and crypto issues off the high priority list, I hope to focus exclusively (as much as possible) on getting the 1.0 version out. 6. Special Orders C. Establish guidelines for handling copyright notices and license headers. WHEREAS, the copyright of contributions to The Apache Software Foundation remains with the contribution's owner(s), but the copyright of the collective work in each Foundation release is owned by the Foundation, WHEREAS, each file within a Foundation release often includes contributions from multiple copyright owners, WHEREAS, the Foundation has observed that per-file attribution of authorship does not promote collaborative development, WHEREAS, inclusion of works that have not been directly submitted by the copyright owners to the Foundation for development does not present the same collaborative development issues and does not allow the owners to consider the Foundation's copyright notice policies; NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that for the case of copyright notices in files contributed and licensed to The Apache Software Foundation, the copyright owner (or owner's agent) must either: remove such notices, move them to the NOTICE file associated with each applicable project release, or provide written permission for the Foundation to make such removal or relocation of the notices, and be it further RESOLVED, that each release shall include a NOTICE file for such copyright notices and other notices required to accompany the distribution, and be it further RESOLVED, that the NOTICE file shall begin with the following text, suitably modified to reflect the product name, version, and year(s) of distribution of the current and past releases: Apache [PRODUCT_NAME] Copyright [yyyy] The Apache Software Foundation This product includes software developed at The Apache Software Foundation (http://www.apache.org/). and be it further RESOLVED, that files licensed to The Apache Software Foundation shall be labeled with the following notice: Licensed to the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) under one or more contributor license agreements. See the NOTICE file distributed with this work for additional information regarding copyright ownership. The ASF licenses this file to you under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License"); you may not use this file except in compliance with the License. You may obtain a copy of the License at http://www.apache.org/licenses/LICENSE-2.0 Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS, WITHOUT WARRANTIES OR CONDITIONS OF ANY KIND, either express or implied. See the License for the specific language governing permissions and limitations under the License. and be it further RESOLVED, that for the case of works that have not been directly submitted by the copyright owners to the Foundation for development, the associated copyright notices for the work shall not be moved, removed, or modified. By Unanimous Vote, Special Order 6C, Establish guidelines for handling copyright notices and license headers, was Approved.
4. Officer Reports E. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] Cliff reported that the 3rd Party License report will likely be officially released later on this month (April), at which point he will start on the Copyright/Header issues. Regarding the 3rd Party License report, it is fully expected that, even though discussed and reviewed, there will be further discussions upon release. The board's stand is that we should release it "as is" and retify things if required. All new projects will need to adhere to the policy; existing projects will be given time to bring their codebases up to policy standards. The board expressed their appreciation to Cliff for a Job Well Done.
4. Officer Reports E. VP of Legal Affairs [Cliff] THIRD-PARTY IP: After nearly two months of review on the board@ list and one month of review by pmcs@, I've finally posted the latest draft of the third-party licensing policy to the legal-discuss list. My goal is to get all new comments or concerns collected by the end of the month, and resolve all issues to get a final, official, v1.0 release in April. I will also be trying to solicit user comments through the feather blog and a brief pointer sent to a few of the project user lists. However, I would also like to explicitly verify that there is a consensus from the Board in support of the guiding principles* behind the policy and the resulting license criteria**. *http://people.apache.org/~cliffs/3party.html#principles **http://people.apache.org/~cliffs/3party.html#criteria LICENSING HEADER, ETC: Now that the third-party policy doc is out there, my next major project is to draft and get our counsel to approve a document that updates our source code licensing header, describes where to place copyright notices, various third-party licenses, explains how to deal with crypto export issues, and more. Although I think it will be useful to our committers to have this all in one document, I won't hold up getting a resolution on the license header/copyright notice issue to wait for the rest of the document.
4. Officer Reports E. V.P. of Legal Affairs [Cliff] GPLv3: I just finished attending the GPLv3 conference at MIT, during which the first "discussion draft" of the GPLv3 was presented. The most relevant news is that the current discussion draft includes a "License Compatibility" section that allows the inclusion of Apache-Licensed (v2.0) independent works within GPLv3-licensed programs. This section may change within the next year, but it remains clear that Eben and RMS will continue to make this sort of compatibility with the Apache License a priority. The other news is that I have accepted an invitation to represent the ASF on one the GPLv3 "discussion committees". THIRD-PARTY IP: I will be sending out a draft policy on third- party IP to the board@ list this Friday, January 20th. Cliff further reported that the Copyright Notice Policy was still being worked on, and will be finished some time after the completion of the 3rd Party License Policy Report.
4. Officer Reports E. V.P. of Legal Affairs [Cliff Schmidt] PATENT ISSUES: I had a second meeting with Microsoft about possible improvements to the patent licenses that they have stated would apply to various WS specifications at OASIS. Details can be found in my summary post to legal-internal on 6 Dec 05 (Message-Id: <81007DBD-EBD8-45DC-8A35-0FB8F4F3FC11@apache.org>. I've since asked them about the possibility of issuing a Covenant not to enforce patent claims, similar to what they recently did for Office 2003 Reference Schemas. No response on that one just yet. GPLv3 COMPATIBILITY: Eben Moglen and RMS have each personally asked that the ASF participate in the GPLv3 input/feedback process, primarily to help ensure compatibility between the GPL and Apache licenses. I plan to attend the first GPLv3 conference at MIT in January for that purpose. THIRD-PARTY IP: After talking with 20+ ASF members at ApacheCon about a proposed licensing policy, I am now ready to float something formal by the membership. The short version is that I believe we need to draw the licensing line at the ability for our users to redistribute all parts of an official ASF distribution under their own license, as long as it does not violate the copyright owner's license. I'm working up a list of how this would impact the top 30 OSI- approved licenses and a few others, but I can tell you it would exclude both the LGPL and the Sun Binary Code License, which is currently used in Apache James. LAME LIST: In prior reports I said I expected to have a policy written on crypto export and copyright notices. I'm late on both. I am now able to projects with the correct procedure for crypto, but I still need to get it formally documented.
4. Officer Reports E. V.P. of Legal Affairs [Cliff Schmidt] SFLC: Justin and I had a kick-off meeting with Eben and two of his lawyers. Justin and Greg are already working with one of them to handle any issues with our books and 501(c)(3) status. Justin is the point person for this work and will be handling ongoing status in his Treasurer's report. BXA/CRYPTO: The Perl folks sent out the required notification for the mod_ssl stuff. I've now taken their feedback and drafted a process document to run through counsel Jason has referred me to another EFF lawyer with more crypto export experience who has agreed to review it. COPYRIGHT NOTICS: Our counsel will be giving one final review on the copyright notice issue starting this Friday (during a monthly teleconference). Should have something ready within one week after that. LGPL: I'm still waiting on feedback from Eben on my Java/LGPL position paper that I sent him last month. He wanted to refrain from giving me feedback until discussing the matter with the FSF. I expect to have something any day now, since that meeting should have recently happened. I recommend we hold off any decision to allow distribution of LGPL components within non- incubating product JARs until getting this one last opinion from Eben and then bouncing it off the rest of our counsel. However, I do not think we should have any legal concern about separately distributing the LGPL and ASF component that depends on it; both Jason and Larry have signed off on this question. THIRD-PARTY IP: In the process of working on a document to get us to a comprehensive policy on what third-party software we will distribute and how, I have created a little matrix to summarize the issues across the most common licenses of interest to the ASF today. I will send this matrix to legal-discuss list today for discussion. It might also be helpful for discussing how LGPL is similar and different from licenses like the CPL and CDDL. ASF LEGAL POLICY DOC: All these issues and more are being written to live within a series of ASF legal policy documents that I am hoping to have approved at or soon after ApacheCon. HOUSEKEEPING: I've created a new directory /foundation/legal/ Board to include all Legal reports and approved resolutions with a README indicating that they are compiled there for convenience and with a pointer to the normative versions.
4. Officer Reports E. V.P. of Legal Affairs [Cliff Schmidt] ADDITIONAL COUNSEL: I have signed an agreement with Eben Moglen of the Software Freedom Law Center to have them offer the ASF pro bono legal services. The first job will be to work with Justin on renewing our 501(c)(3) status and some of the thorny issues we need to resolve to get our books in order. BXA/CRYPTO: While I was working on a draft crypto policy, I was notified that the Perl PMC (and Tomcat?) may not have sent notification to the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS, formerly known as BXA). This has required me to try out specific guidance on these two projects, which will hopefully make the formal policy more robust. I'm still working with the Perl and Tomcat PMCs to help solve their immediate issues. Most of the relevant discussion has been cc'd to legal-internal. COPYRIGHT NOTICES: Last month I reported that I was getting general agreement from our counsel to move to a policy that requires only a licensing notice, but not a copyright notice at the top of each source file. I regret to say that I have made very little progress on this issue since last month. I'll have this ready for next board meeting. LGPL: Last month I reported that this issue needs to be addressed within the context of an overall policy stating what licenses are acceptable for ASF distributions to take dependencies on and distribute (see "Third Party IP" issue below). Ten days ago, I sent Eben Moglen (in his role as general counsel for the FSF) a five-page document (including a developer-focused FAQ) on my interpretation of exactly what the LGPL allows and does not allow related to Java dependencies and distribution requirements. He has not given me feedback on this yet, but has been talking about releasing a similar position paper on behalf of the FSF. THIRD-PARTY IP: Last month I reported that most of the licenses we thought we could sublicense under the Apache License (including the CPL) can really only be distributed under their own license. So, we now need to figure out what makes a license okay to include in an Apache distribution. I've made very little progress on this in the last month, but I hope to have a policy written, discussed, and ready for approval by the December board meeting. ASF LEGAL POLICY DOC: Although I did not make as much progress as I'd hoped on the copyright notice and third-party IP issues over the last month, I did write up and outline for an overall legal policy doc to address these issues and others. The outline (including a brief preview of where the document was probably headed) was sent to legal-discuss.
4. Officer Reports E. V.P. of Legal Affairs [Cliff Schmidt] COPYRIGHT NOTICES: I have gotten Jason, Larry, Robyn, and even Eben Moglen to all agree that we should be fine with no copyright notice at the top of each source file, and instead just include a licensing notice similar to what Roy recently posted to the Board@ list. The issue that isn't quite solved yet is the mechanics of ensuring any COPYRIGHT file or section of the NOTICE file is in sync with the CLAs and agreements from outside contributors. BXA/CRYPTO: I now have an understanding of the open source exception to the crypto export requirements. I've read through the relevant docs at bxa.doc.gov, eff.org, and a legal opinion from McGlashan & Sarrail dated September 13, 2000, which I found in /foundation/Records/BXA. There was a minor (generally favorable) change to the TSU exception (the one that applies to open source) last December. The bottom line is that there appears to be no problem with distributing source or binaries as long as we give appropriate notice to the BXA/BIS. My next step is to get an updated opinion from Jason and publish guidelines to PMCs. LGPL: There's the legal requirements side of this issue and the policy side (as with so many things). I believe I have already completed the due dilligence on the legal requirements side; however, during conversations with Eben Moglen I've found that he plans to publish a document that is explicit about the issues or non-issues with Java and the LGPL. I will be sending him my view of these issues this week, which I hope will influence what ends up in his document. On the policy side, we need to stop treating the LGPL differently from other licenses, and instead determine what our policy is for taking dependencies on and distributing third-party IP. THIRD-PARTY IP: Any time we bring in third-party IP that is not licensed under the Apache License, we have two choices: a) sublicense the work under the Apache License (if we have the rights to do so), or b) distribute the Apache product under each applicable license and make that clear to our users. We've been trying to say we're only doing a) so far. However, in my view we are obviously not consistently doing this, nor do I think it is practical to do so. So, I'm now thinking the best way to address issues of shipping CPL, MPL, CDDL, LGPL, etc. is to stop trying to sublicense them under the Apache License and instead create and implement a policy that allows us to distribute products that contain IP under some set of license terms (including terms outside the scope of the Apache License).
4. Officer Reports E. V.P. of Legal Affairs [Cliff Schmidt] I've inserted slightly edited versions of the same MPL/NPL and LGPL resolutions, which were tabled last month. Since last month's meeting, I have: - confirmed with a second member of ASF's legal counsel that the proposed LGPL policy does not put our product licensing at risk; - posted and discussed the proposed LGPL policy on the legal-discuss list, where no new concerns were raised about the licensing ramifications; however there was concern raised by both outside lawyers and Apache committers that dependencies on LGPL libraries was not in the best interests of some Apache users; - engaged with representatives of the Mozilla Foundation to discuss the proposed MPL/NPL licensing policy. While they have *not* yet formally indicated their agreement with our interpretation, they have not yet raised any new concerns. Future action items include resolving the BXA/crypto issue and investigating and proposing policies for the CPL, EPL, and CDDL licenses. Finally, one of my short-term objectives is to overhaul the legal STATUS file to reflect the current priorities and status. 6. Special Orders B. Allow redistribution of MPL- and NPL-licensed executables WHEREAS, some Project Management Committees (PMCs) within The Apache Software Foundation (ASF) expect to better serve their mission through the use and redistribution of the executable form of existing source code licensed under the Mozilla Public License (MPL) or Netscape Public License (NPL); and WHEREAS, it is the ASF's interpretation that the MPL and NPL licenses permit distribution of such executables under the terms of the Apache License, Version 2.0, provided the terms applicable to the associated source code have been complied with and that appropriate entries made in the ASF distribution's NOTICE file; and WHEREAS, the current ASF licensing policy discourages the distribution of intellectual property by the ASF under terms beyond those stated in the Apache License, Version 2.0. NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that PMCs may use and redistribute the executable form of existing source code licensed under the MPL 1.0, MPL 1.1, NPL 1.0, or NPL 1.1; and be it further RESOLVED, that PMCs must ensure such redistribution only occurs after appropriate entries have been made in the ASF distribution's NOTICE file and only if the PMC finds that the MPL/NPL terms applicable to the associated source code appear to have been satisfied. Special Order 6B, Allow redistribution of MPL- and NPL-licensed executables, was Approved by Unanimous Consent. C. Allow product dependencies on LGPL-licensed libraries WHEREAS, some Project Management Committees (PMCs) within The Apache Software Foundation (ASF) expect to better serve their mission through the occasional dependency on existing LGPL-licensed libraries when no other practical alternative exists under terms covered by the Apache License, Version 2.0; and WHEREAS, research into the impact of distributing ASF products that depend on the presence of LGPL-licensed libraries indicates that the product licensing terms are not affected by such a dependency; and WHEREAS, the current ASF licensing policy discourages the distribution of intellectual property by the ASF under terms beyond those stated in the Apache License, Version 2.0. NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that PMCs may develop and distribute products that depend on the presence of LGPL-licensed libraries when no other practical alternative exists under terms covered by the Apache License, Version 2.0; and be it further RESOLVED, that PMCs will register such use of an LGPL-licensed library with the Vice President of Legal Affairs prior to the PMC's next regularly scheduled Board report, and in no case less than two weeks prior to the distribution of the applicable product(s); and be it further RESOLVED, that PMCs will continue to reevaluate whether a practical alternative exists under terms covered by the Apache License, Version 2.0, which could be substituted in place of the LGPL-licensed library; and be it further RESOLVED, that PMCs must continue to ensure that they do not distribute LGPL-licensed libraries or any other intellectual property that is only available under licenses with terms beyond those stated in the Apache License, Version 2.0. Special Order 6C, Allow product dependencies on LGPL-licensed libraries, was Tabled. The main discussion points were whether the permission of dependencies invalidated the spirit of the ASF and the Apache License. Discussion was to be continued on the Board mailing list.
4. Officer Reports E. V.P. of Legal Affairs [Cliff Schmidt] See Special Orders for two proposed resolutions. The first resolution allows PMCs to develop and distribute software that depends on the presence of LGPL-licensed libraries, *without* distributing the libraries themselves. After numerous discussions with the FSF, other LGPL licensors, and ASF counsel, Larry Rosen, it appears that such a policy should not impact the product licensing. In order to allow PMCs to apply this policy to all useful LGPL-licensed libraries, the resolution does not require the PMCs to get an agreement from each copyright owner, but instead requires the PMC to register the use of the particular LGPL library with the VP of Legal Affairs. See my post to the board@ list for more details ("My recommendation for an ASF policy on the LGPL"). The second resolution allows PMCs to redistribute MPL/NPL- licensed executables. The key difference between the MPL/NPL and the LGPL regarding redistribution requirements is that the MPL/NPL allows redistribution under any license (provided that the distributor complies with the applicable terms of the MPL/NPL); the LGPL requires redistribution of either the source or executable of the library to be licensed only under the LGPL. While the MPL 1.0, MPL 1.1, NPL 1.0, and NPL 1.1 are nearly identical in their treatment of redistribution of executables, it is important to note that the NPL licenses are not OSI- approved, as they discriminate in favor of Netscape, weakening the terms that Netscape has to comply with relative to other users. See my post to the board@ list for more details ("MPL/NPL Issue: My recommendation for an ASF policy on the MPL/NPL"). NOTE: Larry Rosen has agreed with my analysis of the MPL/NPL licenses as described in the referenced post; however, yesterday he suggested that I confirm that Mitchell Baker also agrees (author of the licenses). I have not yet received her response. This could be a reason to table this resolution. 6. Special Orders E. Allow product dependencies on LGPL-licensed libraries WHEREAS, some Project Management Committees (PMCs) within The Apache Software Foundation (ASF) expect to better serve their mission through the use of existing LGPL-licensed libraries as a product dependency; and WHEREAS, research into the impact of distributing ASF products that depend on the presence of LGPL-licensed libraries has indicated that the product licensing terms are not affected by such a dependency; and WHEREAS, the current ASF licensing policy continues to require all intellectual property distributed by the ASF be licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0. NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that PMCs may develop and distribute products that depend on the presence of LGPL-licensed libraries; and be it further RESOLVED, that PMCs will register such use of an LGPL-licensed library with the Vice President of Legal Affairs prior to the PMC's next regularly scheduled Board report, and in no case less than one week prior to the distribution of the applicable product(s); and be it further RESOLVED, that PMCs must continue to ensure they do not distribute LGPL-licensed libraries or any other intellectual property that cannot be strictly licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0. Discussion occurred that raised questions: Is the FSF position public? Will downstream users be comfortable with this? The conclusion was to give 3rd parties time to react to this proposed resolution prior to voting on it. Resolution 6E was tabled with general consent. F. Allow redistribution of MPL- and NPL-licensed executables WHEREAS, some Project Management Committees (PMCs) within The Apache Software Foundation (ASF) expect to better serve their mission through the use and redistribution of existing software executables that are licensed under the Mozilla Public License (MPL) or Netscape Public License (NPL); and WHEREAS, research into the impact of distributing MPL- and NPL-licensed executables indicated that such distribution is allowed under the terms of the Apache License, Version 2.0, only if specific entries made in the NOTICE file and if the associated source code complies with the applicable terms of the MPL/NPL; and WHEREAS, the current ASF licensing policy continues to require all intellectual property distributed by the ASF be licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0. NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that PMCs may use and redistribute software executables that are licensed under the MPL 1.0, MPL 1.1, NPL 1.0, or NPL 1.1; and be it further RESOLVED, that PMCs must ensure such redistribution only occurs after entries are made in the associated product's NOTICE file in compliance with the terms of the MPL/NPL, and that the associated source code also complies with the applicable terms of the MPL/NPL. Resolution 6F was tabled with general consent. Questions arose why MPL 1.0 was not ok before. It is suggested to get feedback from Mitchel Baker. Action Item: Review earlier arguments why MPL 1.0 was not ok.
6. Special Orders B. Appoint a Vice President of Legal Affairs WHEREAS, the Board of Directors deems it to be in the best interests of the Foundation and consistent with the Foundation's purpose to appoint an officer responsible for legal affairs, including but not limited to streamlining communication between the Foundation's Project Management Committees, legal counsel, the Board and other parties pertaining to legal issues. NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the office of "Vice President of Legal Affairs" be and hereby created, the person holding such office to serve at the direction of the Board of Directors, and to have primary responsibility of coordinating the Foundation's legal counsel pertaining to legal issues; and be it further RESOLVED, that Cliff Schmidt be and hereby is appointed to the office of Vice President of Legal Affairs, to serve in accordance with and subject to the direction of the Board of Directors and the Bylaws of the Foundation until death, resignation, retirement, removal or disqualification, or until a successor is appointed. By Unanimous Vote, Cliff Schmidt was appointed as VP of Legal Affairs.