On the Release of GPLv3

amcpherson's picture

Dan Frye, IBM’s VP of open systems development and an LF board member, suggested at the Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit that the Linux community should “just chill about v2 and v3.” We agree.

While at first look, having software available under different licenses may sound complicated, it’s actually not much different than the multitude of licenses that have always been available in both the open and closed source worlds. GPLv3 represents one more.

Here are the facts:

  • GPLv3 will not disrupt the Linux market. GPLv2 and v3 can co-exist peacefully, and we expect Linux distributions to contain both v2 and v3 code.
  • According to public statements made by the kernel community, they do not intend to re-license the kernel under v3 at this time. This decision is up to the kernel community.
  • Just as it has since its inception, the Linux platform will continue to work well in its heterogeneous licensing environment, solving the needs of a wide variety of users and developers.
  • We do not anticipate any licensing concerns that will inhibit the continued growth and development of the Linux ecosystem.

In other words, “just chill.”

We see the breadth and depth of participation in the GPL v3 process as a terrific indication of the vibrancy of the open source community and the importance of open source to a broad spectrum of developers, vendors and customers worldwide.