Kurt McKee

lessons learned in production

Hey there! This article was written in 2007.

It might not have aged well for any number of reasons, so keep that in mind when reading (or clicking outgoing links!).

Licensing Renquist

Posted 30 November 2007 in renquist

I've long thought that the GNU GPL was the software license that best reflected my ideologies about software, and with the release of the GNU GPL version 3, I've decided that it's important to man up and commit to the new version. I'm taking it a step further, however: Renquist will be licensed under the GNU Affero General Public License, version 3.

The reason I'm choosing the Affero version is that it prohibits someone from using Renquist as a backend for a web service without making the source code available. Under the regular GPL licenses, web services do not technically distribute any software to people, so there is no need to provide source code. Thus, someone could take Renquist, significantly improve it, and create a web service without ever having to release the source code of the changes. This is unacceptable; everyone should benefit from any improvements to the code. Choosing the GNU AGPLv3 helps ensure that any and all improvements will be made available to the public so that everyone benefits.

And that's the way it should be.