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RE: clickthrough license

From: Mark Wielaard
Subject: RE: clickthrough license
Date: Fri, 08 Oct 2004 12:39:01 +0200


On Tue, 2004-10-05 at 00:54, David Holmes wrote:
> > It got worse the last years. Specs, or at least draft specs would be
> > published publicly without having any click-through license to which
> > people have to consent. There are also some nice counter examples though
> > of expert groups doing everything publicly (JSR133 about the memory
> > model, JSR166 about concurrency util classes).
> Even those "open" JSR's ultimately have a click-through license on the final
> spec.

I just looked at these two jsr's and both are not even available through
a click-through. (Strangely enough both just point to the sun 1.5.0
implementation documentation, which as far as I know doesn't include the
specs at all.)
JSR133 is available at
JSR166 is available at

The JCP also doesn't require the (final) specifications to be provided
under a click-wrap. As these JSR's show it it perfectly fine to publish
the specification, reference implementation and test compatability kit
in the public domain. (Unfortunately, as you point out most JSRs don't
do this at the moment. Please tell specification leads about the option
to do everything in the open.)

> But it does concern me that such unofficial sources would be preferred over
> the actual specification.

Of course actual specifications are preferred over unofficial sources.
But then the actual specifications have to be available in such a way
that we can be sure that we are free to use them. Also the use of
unofficial sources is often explicitly encouraged since what you might
call the "actual specification" (like the api documentation sun
publishes online) is often not strict enough to describe what is
actually expected. More often than not I have found books published
about various packages are much more in depth than the "official"

> Further, given Classpath's goals, I don't see how
> it could ever claim to be what it is, without requiring compliance with
> Sun's licenses regarding independent implementations.

I am not sure I am following you here. The given goal of GNU Classpath
is to provide a free implementation of the core class libraries so that
people can use these libraries to create (free) software for the GNU
system. For this we try to be as compatible as we can be while making
sure that the freedoms of the GNU project are preserved. Hopefully we
make this happen while also being 100% compatible with other

GNU is not Unix, and GNU Classpath is not (the core) Java (library).
We just don't have a cute acronym to express that.



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