[Rpm-maint] relicensing for Maximum RPM

Karsten Wade kwade at redhat.com
Fri Jul 10 19:46:24 UTC 2009

   [This is about relicensing 'Maximum RPM', gaining consensus from
   this team, and figuring out the path ahead.  I joined the list for
   this discussion, no need to Cc: me on replies.]


Currently I'm handling relicensing for Fedora Documentation, from the
long-deprecated OPL to the CC BY SA 3.0.  This move is supported by
Red Hat Legal and Content Services.  Legal (Richard Fontana et al) are
very interested in seeing all content moved to the more modern,
useful, stable, and legally vetted CC BY SA license.  The Content
Services team are relicensing their upstream content that is developed
in Fedora with a target for the next version of Enterprise Linux.
They benefit from a liberal licensing by gaining an increase in

What does all of this have to do with rpm.org?  Recently, Florian
Festi met with Fedora Docs Team member John McDonough in Berlin, and
they discussed the Fedora team working on an update to the venerable
'Maximum RPM'.  There is work going on in parallel with the 'RPM
Guide', updating from the old version found here:


As I explain in this article[1], there are a number of benefits from
switching the licensing.  With the various stars aligned in Red Hat
and the Fedora community, now is a good time to make it happen.

The challenge with 'Maximum RPM' is that it is both using the open
publication license (OPL) *and* using optional clauses that make the
content non-free:


That license is a barrier to Fedora formally working on the content.
Fortunately, we have a clear pathway to do a relicensing.  Red Hat is
the sole copyright holder currently, Red Hat Legal has asked us to
stop using the OPL, especially the optional non-free clauses, and
there is current momentum around doing relicensing.  With this
alignment, you may already have all the permission needed to

Essentially, I'd like to get your consensus that as Fedora Docs folks
work on max-rpm, they can go ahead and relicense the content to CC BY

SA 3.0.  In fact, I would recommend that be the first and a single
change made in the source repo by the docs person, making it clear
follow-on contributions are licensed under the CC BY SA.

Thanks - Karsten

[1] http://iquaid.org/2009/07/06/why-relicense-fedora-documentation-and-wiki-content/
Karsten 'quaid' Wade, Community Gardener
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