Licensing issues with dbus and dbus-glib

Havoc Pennington hp at
Tue May 29 10:02:06 PDT 2007

Christian F.K. Schaller wrote:
> People using GPL+exception licensing is quite common, so it would be nice to get
> it solved once and for all by having dbus AFL/LGPL  dual licensed instead of getting each 
> application developer to have to relicense. In the case of RB they would have to restart 
> a process they already spent Months on to fix this solution.

Do you think this is in any way easy for dbus? Look at AUTHORS...

Also, the LGPL plain sucks, so we should have some bias against.

> Having dbus LGPL would also make it more conform to the rest of the library stack,
> ie. fit the GNOME library licensing policy of using the LGPL. I think that is also KDE's
> policy even if they have a very noteable exception in the heart of their stack.

If it isn't easy to just do the exception, I think we should explore 
whether GPL+AFL is really different from GPL+LGPL when a GPL app is 
involved. I think with a GPL app, in both cases you must use the lib 
under GPL, not under the alternative. If you read the LGPL at least that 
is my impression. I don't understand how GPL+AFL is different. LGPL is 
*not* GPL compatible except it gives you a GPL option, as libdbus also does.

Also, does the "viral" work in the app->library direction? If an app 
builds on libdbus, saying the app is a derived work of libdbus makes 
sense to me, but saying libdbus is a derived work of the app I find 
somewhat odd. Thus, it may be possible to use the lib under the AFL or 
LGPL and not have to choose the GPL option.


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