[rfk-dev] licensing

Nick Moffitt nick@zork.net
Mon, 27 Jan 2003 15:16:03 -0800

begin  Uncle Pedro  quotation:
> Another subject to consider is licensing. I don't fully understand
> the technicalities of the issue, but as I understand it, it's
> technically feasible for reimplementations of rfk to be under a
> license other than the GPL.

	Copyright basically works like this:

By default, everything you create is under a copyright held by you,
and the default is "all rights reserved".  That means that if I put
something up on the net with no copyright/license statements, the
default is that people can download and use it but not much else.

So we have licenses to grant rights to various people, and to give up
some of those "reserved" rights.  The rights that matter to most free
software types are modification and redistribution.  Of course, we can
make these rights conditional on various things, as the GPL does.

But a license is just a gift of permission to the recipient of a work
to do various things.  If you write your own RFK program, you hold
copyright and can do as you like, provided you are not bound by
conditions on the parts of it you got from us.

> Is this still true of the messages file is statically compiled in?
> What if it is just read at run-time?

	We can provide the messages file under a separate license if
you like.  MIT X license should do fine, as that is basically an
unconditional grant of all relevant permissions with a disclaimer of
warranty attached.

	We'd need to contact everyone who contributed an NKI, however.