How can use BeanShell under SPL with ObjectWeb

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How can use BeanShell under SPL with ObjectWeb

David Spectar
BeanShell can be used under the LGPL or the SPL. But
embedded within the BeanShell library is a hidden
library called org.objectweb.asm that is distributed
under the terms of the LGPL. ObjectWeb and it's
license is not mentioned in the license portion of the
website. How could we use BeanShell under SPL if
BeanShell also includes ObjectWeb?


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Re: How can use BeanShell under SPL with ObjectWeb

Mark Murphy
[hidden email] wrote:
> BeanShell can be used under the LGPL or the SPL. But
> embedded within the BeanShell library is a hidden
> library called org.objectweb.asm that is distributed
> under the terms of the LGPL. ObjectWeb and it's
> license is not mentioned in the license portion of the
> website. How could we use BeanShell under SPL if
> BeanShell also includes ObjectWeb?

IANAL, but I taught open source licensing not that long ago.

The LGPL's license terms stop at the library's own border. Files that
ship with the library, if modified, fall under the LGPL terms. Files
that somebody adds to the library and ships *as part of the library*
fall under LGPL terms. However, libraries, subsystems, and applications
that *use* the LGPL'd library are not subject to its terms.

Case in point: GCC. GCC's C runtime library (libc? I'm such a Java-head
now that I forget my C library nomenclature...) originally was under the
GPL, because the GPL predated the LGPL by a fair gap of time. With the
runtime under the GPL, anything that used that runtime library -- in
effect, anything worthwhile compiled with GCC -- would fall under the
GPL. That's why Richard Stallman elected to create the Library General
Public License (now Lesser General Public License) and put the runtime
under it. Now, programs compiled with GCC can link to the C runtime
library and not be subject to the runtime's license.

If one of the Beanshell maintainers modifies ObjectWeb's ASM library,
those modifications would most likely fall under the LGPL. Otherwise,
ObjectWeb's ASM library should not affect Beanshell licensing, any more
than the GCC C runtime library affects licensing of GCC-compiled programs.

Of course, this is not legal advice, nor does it play legal advice on
TV. You should definitely discuss this with qualified legal counsel,
should you have serious concerns about the applicability of LGPL in this
circumstance.

Mark Murphy
[hidden email]


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