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posted by martyb on Friday March 24 2017, @08:21PM   Printer-friendly
from the socket-to-me dept.

The OpenSSL project, home of the world’s most popular SSL/TLS and cryptographic toolkit, is changing its license to the Apache License v 2.0 (ASL v2). As part of this effort, the OpenSSL team launched a new website and has been working with various corporate collaborators to facilitate the re-licensing process.

“This re-licensing activity will make OpenSSL, already the world’s most widely-used FOSS encryption software, more convenient to incorporate in the widest possible range of free and open source software,” said Mishi Choudhary, Legal Director of Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC) and counsel to OpenSSL. “OpenSSL’s team has carefully prepared for this re-licensing, and their process will be an outstanding example of ‘how to do it right.’ SFLC is pleased to have been able to help the team bring this process to this point, and looks forward to its successful and timely completion.”

The website will aid the OpenSSL team’s efforts to contact everyone who has contributed to the project so far, which includes nearly 400 individuals with a total of more than 31,000 commits. The current license dates back to the 1990’s and is more than 20 years old. The open source community has grown and changed since then, and has mostly settled on a small number of standard licenses.

The full announcement is at https://www.openssl.org/blog/blog/2017/03/20/license/


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  • (Score: 2) by ikanreed on Friday March 24 2017, @08:57PM (3 children)

    by ikanreed (3164) on Friday March 24 2017, @08:57PM (#483862) Journal

    What amount of code included in a commit could reasonably be considered non-creative and thus not subject to copyright?

    Has there ever been a legal test created for creative extent in software? Is that even the right phrasing?

    If not, can I go ahead and copyright "for(int i=0;icount;i++)" and "if(value!=null)"?

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 24 2017, @09:21PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 24 2017, @09:21PM (#483875)

    Non-creative is usually those that don't require any sort of human judgment because of the problem domain. So, things like short phrases, familiar symbols, or forced designs. This means that means that simple if statements or for loops are not copyrightable on their own. This could arguably extend to patches that only fix typos or converts whitespace (e.g. PEP8 or automatic linter failure). However, that doesn't mean that the same thing isn't copyrightable when a part of a greater work that does require creativity.

  • (Score: 2) by Bot on Friday March 24 2017, @11:02PM (1 child)

    by Bot (3902) on Friday March 24 2017, @11:02PM (#483907) Journal

    If it is not creative you can rewrite it.

    I despise copyright in general, but if the deal is: "I give you this code and you put this under this license", YOU DO NOT ALTER THE DEAL UNILATERALLY. It took time to give you the code, no matter the quality. Get it under the agreed upon terms or Write Your Own Damn Code.

    Corporations sitting on billions of dollars have to resort to stealing, I guess it is a matter of principle.

    --
    Account abandoned.
    • (Score: 3, Informative) by tekk on Saturday March 25 2017, @02:09PM

      by tekk (5704) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 25 2017, @02:09PM (#484100)

      They actually aren't changing it unilaterally (yet)

      theo@ got a message from the openssl team asking for his permission to change the copyright. It remains to be seen what they're going to do about him saying no.