[tor-dev] License for flash proxy software

Mike Perry mikeperry at torproject.org
Wed Jul 11 01:34:45 UTC 2012

Thus spake David Fifield (david at bamsoftware.com):

> I feel there should be a LICENSE file in the flash proxy client packages
> currently at http://www.bamsoftware.com/dist/flashproxy/. What is the
> recommended practice? Right now the files carry no license. I would be
> happy with anything that is free software and convenient to the Tor
> Project. For example the 3-clause BSD used by obfsproxy is fine. I am
> pretty sure that I wrote all the code that is in use at this point.

I once wrote a whole article on choosing the best free software license
as an exercise, and then I heard Roger sum it up in exactly two point
five sentences:

"If your widget is the only thing of its kind in the world, and you
really want it to exist in any form no matter what, you should pick

Otherwise, if your widget is merely a replacement widget for similar
closed source widgets, and you'd like to ensure that your widget always
remains in existence as the free one, choose GPL/MPL/etc.

[Also, GPL can be hella annoying to change in the future once you have
merged patches from other contributors. Make total destroy the Copyright

Ok, so he didn't say that last bit in that exact way, but I think he
meant most of it. If your widget ends up being so awesome that you
exterminate all other things like it, you might end up wishing you
hadn't made it GPL... Of course though, then you might just end up
exploited by Steve Jobs once he (or his likeness) has been defrosted
from Alcor.. And nobody wants that...

Personally, I would go BSD/MIT/X11 and just know that if you ever made a
closed source version, nobody would or should trust it. Max freedom ftw?

Mike Perry
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