[jdom-interest] Imcompatibility with GPL

Tatu Saloranta cowtowncoder at yahoo.com
Thu Sep 28 16:53:32 PDT 2006

--- Elliotte Harold <elharo at metalab.unc.edu> wrote:

> Tatu Saloranta wrote:
> > Now, GPL and LGPL are (at least according to FSF
> > interpretation) mostly incompatible with most
> other
> > free or open source licenses: claim is (from both
> > and Apache, though) that LGPL and ASL would be
> > incompatible. For a non-lawyer this seems silly
> > (discussion on java class loading forming static
> > linking and all)... 
> That's an urban legend (well a programmer legend
> anyway). It has been 
> thoroughly debunked, but some people persist in

I would be interested in links to thorough debunking.
2 years ago (when I was trying to figure out whether
there could be incompatibility) all I found was
pervasive repetition of the story about an FSF lawyer
thoroughly confirming the incompatibility. ;-/

> believing it. Java class 
> loading details simply don't matter.  The LGPL and
> GPL work just fine 
> for Java code.

I would be happy if this is indeed the case... I have
just had too many people explain to me that ASL's (et
al) fear of LGPL is well-founded (due to some
[apparently unknown] FSF lawyer making the case based
on the way Java does the link resolving during class
loading time), and thus am not dismissing the claim
off-hand, not any more.

That is, I don't agree with the interpretation, but
enough people do seem to believe (or want to make
others believe) that there is incompatibility, so that
the perception starts to matter.

For me they are compatible, and as such any code I
have licensed under LGPL and ASL (for example) can be
freely used and distributed together. And my
impression is this is the way most other java open
source developers feel as well, unless instructed
otherwise by bigger organizations, with lawyers. ;-)

-+ Tatu +-

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