[opam-devel] Opam license bug

Fabrice Le Fessant Fabrice.Le_fessant at inria.fr
Tue Jan 19 14:17:43 GMT 2016

On Tue, Jan 19, 2016 at 9:47 AM Daniel Bünzli <daniel.buenzli at erratique.ch>

> 3. I'm perfectly fine if opam stays with the LGPL. I'm not however fine
> with the added CLA.

I must repeat at this point that, as written in the first mail, the reason
why Louis was proposing to use a CLA for OPAM is that the current license
is not LGPL. It is a wrongly patched LGPL v3, with an exception coming from
LGPL v2, that makes it unusable in the context of OCaml. Without a CLA from
major contributors to OPAM, the only option is to move to GPL (LGPL has a
clause that allows switching to GPL without agreement from the

Now, on the long term, having a CLA is a good thing for any open-source
project, as changing the license might be needed for some unpredicted
reason, at some point in the life of a project. For example, a license
might become obsolete, because it was tried in a court and failed to
protect what it should have. OCaml itself is currently changing its license.

Note that OCamlPro's CLA is just a copy of the standard one used by Google
and many companies and organizations, that do not transfer copyright, but
just allows OCamlPro to change the license. I haven't checked, but it is
even maybe the same as Inria's one for OCaml.

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