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Re: Sources licensed under PHP License and not being PHP are not distributable

From:  Thomas Goirand <zigo-AT-debian.org>
To:  debian-devel-AT-lists.debian.org
Subject:  Re: Sources licensed under PHP License and not being PHP are not distributable
Date:  Mon, 07 Jul 2014 15:39:54 +0800
Message-ID:  <53BA4ECA.5060505@debian.org>
Archive-link:  Article

On 06/26/2014 07:41 PM, Ondřej Surý wrote:
> The initial conclusion came from debian-legal, and I think it's
> futile to discuss that with ftp-masters when I already done that.
> And as you can see in the initial conversation in the bug report
> I was against the removal, but in the end they have convinced
> me that licensing anything not-being-PHP under PHP License
> is just no-goer.
> 
> O.

It all depends what you consider "not-being-PHP". To some degree,
modules in pear.php.net are part of PHP, which is why we call the
packages php-*. This is also upstream PHP (the language) view on the
mater as well.

Also, previously, it was the case that anything lower than PHP license
version 3.01 was not acceptable, but the PHP license was ok for PEAR
modules. This was already discussed at the time (I believe), or at
least, that's what I've been told by the FTP masters when uploading
(that I'm sure). I do not agree that we just go back, and change our
mind on the licensing policy, after we did all the work. This kind of
decision has to be firm, and we should hold to it. Otherwise, it's a
horrible loss of time for everyone.

Please let me know what changed, and what part of the license is not
acceptable anymore.

On 06/26/2014 07:53 PM, Ondřej Surý wrote:
> Don't shoot the messenger, I just did the dirty work.

I don't agree you're just the messenger. You've filed the RC bugs, no?

> I have discussed this with ftp-masters and release team before
> filling the bugs, arguing heavily in disagreement with ftp-master's
> REJECT FAQ - the PHP License REJECT is there since 2005.

That is simply not truth. Anything with PHP license << 3.01 has been,
but if it's >= 3.01, it has always been considered OK, at least for
pear.php.net modules. I believe there's a confusion inside the FTP
master team about this.

On 06/27/2014 02:17 AM, Matthias Urlichs wrote:
> Thus, while we're in a reasonably good position to convince Upstream
> to fix that problem, filing RC bugs and thus making PHP unuseable in
> Debian is certainly going to be regarded as typical Debian
> principles-above-all overkill but unlikely to be helpful to anybody.

Well put, but I'd have say it with stronger words.

On 06/27/2014 02:27 AM, Clint Byrum wrote:
> If anyone has a better way to safeguard those to whom we distribute
> software, please do speak up about it. I for one think our users
> choose Debian because they can be sure their rights are being looked
> after. Let's do what we can to help upstream rectify the situation,
> but lets also be honest with our users while they respond.

If we are to be honest, then we should *not* change our mind 10 years
after we've accepted some licensing. PEAR modules have been accepted
with PHP license 3.01, and we shall continue to keep them in Debian. I
have a less strong opinion about anything non-PEAR module and PHP
license though (I'm not sure about this, in all honesty), and I care
less about them anyway.

On 06/27/2014 10:43 AM, Chris Bannister wrote:
> On Thu, Jun 26, 2014 at 08:57:43PM +0200, Matthias Urlichs wrote:
>> I'd recommend that we safeguard our users against 'PHP' licensing
>> problems the same way I protect myself against a meteorite hitting
>> me on my way to work tomorrow, and for roughly the same reasons.
>
> Because there is nothing you can do?

No, because statistically, it's as if it was impossible that such a
cataclysmic event occurs.

On 07/01/2014 05:22 AM, Clint Byrum wrote:
> Unless I'm mistaken, the wording in the PHP license makes it invalid
> for anybody that isn't actually the PHP project to use without making
> a false claim that "THIS SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED BY THE PHP DEVELOPMENT
> TEAM".

IMO, you are mistaking indeed. Anyone contributing a module to
pear.php.net PEAR channel can be considered from the "PHP development
team". That's a question of view, and we've accepted that view, so why
should we go back after we have accepted packages based on this? This is
also the view of upstream PHP (the language) and upstream PEAR module
contributors, as much as one can tell. If you do not agree, please point
to anyone who expressed otherwise.

On 07/01/2014 06:58 PM, Ondřej Surý wrote:
> JFTR the http://www.php.net/software page claims that software
> distributed from php.net, pecl.php.net and pear.php.net distributes
> software under PHP License[1].
>
> This was also claimed in some private emails between me and
> PHP folks[2].
>
> My conclusion is that the PHP folks do agree that the PHP License
> cannot be used for software outside *.php.net, but it's perfectly OK
> for stuff distributed from *.php.net.

I'm very surprised of the circonvolutions to finally have this outcome,
which we already knew about: it's been like this in Debian for YEARS.

On 07/01/2014 06:58 PM, Ondřej Surý wrote:
> If there's no wild disagreement from FTP Masters on this in couple
> of days I will just start closing bugs on packages distributed from
> *.php.net.

I agree that this is what should be done, yes.

Cheers,

Thomas Goirand (zigo)




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