[webkit-dev] WTF license terms

Maciej Stachowiak mjs at apple.com
Sat Nov 3 01:54:48 PDT 2007

On Nov 3, 2007, at 1:31 AM, Mike Hommey wrote:

> On Fri, Nov 02, 2007 at 08:34:21PM -0700, Maciej Stachowiak wrote:
>> Hi everyone,
>> I'd like to change the license terms for the contents of  
>> JavaScriptCore/wtf
>> from LGPL to Apple modified BSD, except for the copy of Google's  
>> TCMalloc
>> and the unicode/ directory. All the copyrights on files besides  
>> tcmalloc
>> and unicde are held by Apple and it looks like the only non-Apple
>> contributions are a handful of < 5 line build fixes which were too  
>> small
>> for copyright. Mainly I'd like to apply this to RefPtr, Vector, and  
>> the
>> Hash-related classes.
>> I would like to do this to make the code usable by the widest  
>> possible
>> range of projects, including even proprietary code, and open source
>> projects with licenses that are not LGPL-compatible. This is basic  
>> data
>> structure code, and although it is highly optimized it is not really
>> specific to web browsing.
>> I wanted to run this proposed license change by the community. I  
>> know there
>> have been some concerns about which code is BSD and which is LGPL.  
>> In this
>> case, I think maximum reusability is the right thing for this code.
> While speaking of licensing, what makes it a real mess is probably  
> more
> the fact there are both 2-clause and 3-clause BSD code than the use of
> LGPL and BSD. And it's obviously worse when these 3 are used in
> different files in the same directory.

Keep in mind that the "3-clause" BSD-style licenses are not the  
classic BSD license with advertising clause, which *requires* mention  
in advertising. It just withholds the right to claim endorsement by  
particular companies (in some cases Apple, in a few others Google). I  
don't believe this conflicts with LGPL or creates any practical problem.

> By the way, I filed bug #14885 a while ago, which has fortunately been
> fixed, but new files additions "broke" it again. So, coders, please be
> careful when add LGPLed files, and check the FSF address to be  
> correct.

Patches welcome.


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