[osgeo4w-dev] Click through proprietary licensing

Matt Wilkie matt.wilkie at gov.yk.ca
Mon Nov 15 13:36:59 EST 2010

I echo the annoyance at expending a lot of effort to help proprietary
license holders corral users in certain directions. It's certainly
against the spirit of OSGeo4W.

On the other hand as a user I have to consume proprietary formats as
part of my job and the recent ECW license changes to merely read their 
format have been a major source of irritation and extra effort expense. 
I would welcome a click-through-license install process for this and 
similar applications/libraries.

> Honestly, if everything is installed as part of OSGeo4W it does not
> seem like a gray area to me.  It seems to be a clear violation of the
> GPL.
> If the end user later adds a proprietary plugin of their own accord
> then we are at least in a gray area or even in the clear.  But it
> isn't my wish to try and subvert the GPL.

I think it's important to communicate the difference between the "real" 
osgeo4w applications and those that are included for convenience and 
interoperability. If the click-licenses pop up as part of the regular 
install process this distinction will be blurry, if present at all, to 
many users. So perhaps a two stage install process, or two install 
programs (actually the same exe with a different setup.ini)?

I think this method defensibly demonstrates our intent to honour the 
GPL. There are likely other methods, but I lack the imagination at 
present to conjure them up. :)

matt wilkie
Geomatics Analyst
Information Management and Technology
Yukon Department of Environment
10 Burns Road * Whitehorse, Yukon * Y1A 4Y9
867-667-8133 Tel * 867-393-7003 Fax

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