[forum] GPL-incompatible license

Richard Stallman rms@gnu.org
Sat, 07 Feb 2004 04:01:10 -0500


As the Debian developers have noticed, the new Xfree86 license is
incompatible with the GPL.  It has to do with the specific
requirements about including notices in manuals and documentation.
The incompatibility means that linking GPL-covered applications with
an Xlib that has this requirement would violate the GPL.

The general intention of this requirement does not conflict with the
GPL -- for instance, the revised BSD license says something basically
similar in a way that is compatible with the GPL.  The conflict comes
from the specific details of the requirement.  The revised BSD license
is less specific, so one that simply including the license along with
the program satisfies its notification requirement.

XFree86 project leaders, if you would prefer (all else being equal) to
make the license GPL-compatible, can we work together to investigate
whether you can do this and still achieve your other goals?