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Why I use a BSD-style license.

There are many terms referring to Open Source Software (OSS), Free Software (FS) and so on. But open and free has a different meaning for me than for many people in the Linux-developer community.

Free usually refers to the fact that something has not constraints and restrictions as well as it does not cost money.
Open Basically means the same as "free".

The GPL is not free!

People referring to OSS usually refer to so-called GPL'ed software. GPL is to Open Source what the money is to capitalism ... this may seem so.

How do I come to this (strange?) conclusion? Well, read the definition of "free" above and try to think about it. The GPL states, that the source to a software has to be open for anybody at any time and so on. Looks free. It also ensures that the rights of the developer of the software are granted to the next user of the source. This is to ensure that anyone following the original author has the same rights. No restrictions, yet. But now if I am a developer in some company - I find that cool piece of code out there and it is under GPL. Great Open Source ... open and free and all. But if you read on in the GPL, you will find, that follow-ups of the GPL'ed software have to be under GPL, too. So as a developer in some company one would not be able to use it since the employer would not like to see 'his' product under the GPL ... "open" to everyone.
Is that not a major restriction? To me it is. Not being able to use this so-called "free software" and "open source software" in my own product without publishing it under GPL is a major restriction. That's why the GPL is not free at all to me.

BSDL is free ...!

The BSD license allows anyone else to use my code (even in closed-source) as long as they pertain my copyright notice in the source code.

You now might say ... "ooh, what a moron, he gives away for free what took him hours or days to develop ... and then he even allows others to make money with it".
Sure, one probably has to be somewhat idealistic to do this, but frankly, it's worth, I am sure. When I worked for a company last year and had to work with a product no one else had used in that company before (actually they used some older version years ago which was simply incompatible with the newer one), I would have been grateful for just some snippets. The documentation was partially horrible and since the software was purchased by the customer of the company in which I worked, only the customer was allowed to get support first (we solved this later). But anyway valuable time was spent in finding out things that should just be documented. If I'd found OSS or Public Domain snippets the problem could be solved by using them unless they were under GPL or any other restrictive license.

Actually this is why I use a BSD-style license instead of the restrictive GPL. I want to share my efforts to help progress ...

To not insult anybody ... there are many more non-restrictive OSS-licenses ;)


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