KF5 & Qt5 - QtCS Session

John Layt jlayt at kde.org
Fri Jul 1 00:28:07 BST 2011

On Thursday 30 Jun 2011 23:42:42 Albert Astals Cid wrote:
> A Thursday, June 30, 2011, John Layt va escriure:
> > Hi,
> > 
> > At QtCS we had a follow-up session from Platform 11 to discuss what
> > technical changes we'd like to see in Qt5.
> > 
> > The legal aspects of copying code from KDE was discussed.  Ideally all
> > contributed code would be a clean room implementation by the contributor,
> > but this defeats QA reasons for copying well-proven code.
> Please let's take the licensing issue very seriously since its an important
> topic for some people (myself included)
> Albert

Yes, it's not something we can take lightly as it can have serious 
consequences, both from a legal and a community viewpoint.

As Ossi points out there is a legal limit on what qualifies for copyright 
protection, but that line is fuzzy and what I might judge as not covered may 
be viewed differently by the person who made the changes.  We are not lawyers 
so we should err on the side of caution.  We will need to work out guidelines, 
for example any spelling corrections or a const fix are obviously not covered, 
but an actual bug fix is a grey area depending on size and obviousness.

One idea suggested was to compile a list of those people happy to contribute 
code to Qt.  When assesing some of your own code to contribute you could check 
the list of other committers and then get them to either push their patches or 
declare them Public Domain.

If there's commits that can't be copied, people will need to use the last 
'safe' revision as a base, and either make the change themselves in a 
different way, or more safely ask someone who hasn't seen the problematic 
commit to make the required change.

Which reminds me of a few other legal issues that came up in other 
discussions, expecially about patents, but I think I might raise those on the 
eV list first.

One point that I will mention here is that the Qt Contributors Agreement 
doesn't just guarantee Qt's commerical license business, but it also protects 
the Free Qt Foundation's ability to release the entire codebase under a BSD 
license, without the Agreement only Nokia code would be covered.



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