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vim license (was Re: OpenBSD (fwd))

Bram Moolenaar (Bram@moolenaar.net) wrote:

> Please look into the most recent license.  There were some comments from
> Debian developers, which made me adjust the license conditions a tiny
> bit.  Basically it's the same thing, but the way it's written makes it a
> bit less strict.

>> why not adopt a BSD-style license,

> Because I don't want to get into the situation that happened to Elvis:
> Someone took the code, ported it to Windows and added a few fancy
> dialogs.  This is now available as shareware.  The changes are not
> available as source code, but it can't be much.  Thus this guy is making
> money of the original code, without paying back the author.  That's not
> fair, thus I want to avoid this.  There is also the risk of a company
> adding a few features and claiming the rights for them, thus disallowing
> anybody else to make the same changes.  I recently discovered HP is
> making a modified version of Vim, and I still didn't get the source code
> changes from them...

>> it's just a shame a little statement prevents Vim from being truly free
>> software. the FreeBSD, NetBSD and OpenBSD projects aim toward integrating
>> good code that anyone can use for any purpose, without restrictions.

> Vim is free, open-source, etc.  It's more free than GPL, since I can
> permit companies to use Vim for special purposes.  The freedom to sell
> software should also not be underestimated (that's the freedom the
> author has).  GPL is very bad in that perspective, since requiring
> distribution of changed source code indirectly prohibits making money.
> I've been thinking of a GPL++ license, which makes this very clear:
> Allow distribution of (un)modified sources to the public under GPL, and
> allow other ways of distribution after negotiation with the author (or
> representative).  Thus it would be possible to let HP use a modified
> version of Vim in their IDE if they pay me for it.  That's true freedom
> from my perspective.