[webkit-dev] WebKit licensing and LGPLv3

Lars Knoll lars at trolltech.com
Wed Jul 25 03:47:09 PDT 2007

On Wednesday 25 July 2007, Allan Sandfeld Jensen wrote:
> On Wednesday 25 July 2007 01:51, Maciej Stachowiak wrote:
> > 1) We will continue to accept only code that's licensed under a BSD-
> > style (no advertising clause) license, or LGPL 2.1, or other
> > compatible license. We don't want to accept code that's LGPL 3 only,
> > as that would make the whole project LGPL 3.
> I think continuing to require "LGPL 2 or later" would be the most sane and
> most compatible.

Accepting LGPL 3 only code is not something we should do, as it would lead to 
more restrict licensing terms than we currently have.

> > 2) We'd like to change the copyright notices from their current mix of
> > "LGPL 2 or any later version" and "LGPL 2.1 or any later version" to
> > just LGPL 2.1, to make this clear. This one is maybe more debatable,
> > so I'd like to know if anyone objects. It would prevent incorporating
> > WebKit code into LGPL 3 projects, and would require sign-off from all
> > copyright holders to ever change to a different LGPL version in the
> > future (in case the FSF came out with a version 3.1 or 4 that solved
> > some of the problems with v3).
> I object. I would like to reserve the right to integrate WebKit with LGPL 3
> projects like future KDE libs.
> Though since we are talking LGPL the linking-issues are not that
> problematic, it would still make it easier if the project continued to
> include the "or later" clause.

I have to agree with Allan. Restricting it to 2.1 only might give open source 
projects (KDE being one of them) problems in the future. I don't see a need 
to change the license to become more restrictive than it has been in the 

As a sidenote, since we're already talking about licensing: I don't quite see 
the benefits of having a mix of BSD and LGPL licenses. LGPL is more 
restrictive, so that one applies to the project as a whole anyways. Wouldn't 
it be easier to just have one license (LGPL 2.1 or later) for the complete 
code base?


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