Re: [architecture] Community-sourced Submission for the VA Scheduling Contest

On 12/18/2012 11:51 AM (US Eastern Time), Chris Goranson wrote: > > Hi Luis, > > I know you and I have spoken about this - and perhaps it's worth a > separate thread. Our intentions with HealthBoard are to release it > under non-commerical LGPL > [KSB] The non-sequitur is that there is no such thing as "non-commercial LGPL". If the license is LGPL, commercial use is permitted. Since the text of the LGPL license itself is copyrighted by the Free Software Foundation, you cannot change the license to exclude commercial use and still call it LGPL - you have to give your license a different name, like "Custom License X" (just as you cannot make your own facial tissue and call it Kleenex). So, the license is either LGPL (which permits commercial use) or Custom License X (which may or may not permit commercial use based on a knowledgeable reading of the language). Regards -- Bhaskar > and Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported > licenses. I realize there's differences here vs. OSEHRA's Apache 2.0 / > CC licenses. > > I realize there are different opinions / interpretations on OS > licensing in general, would it be worth a future webinar topic for OSEHRA? > > Chris > > -- > Full post: > http://www.osehra.org/discussion/community-sourced-submission-va-schedul... > > Manage my subscriptions: http://www.osehra.org/og_mailinglist/subscriptions > Stop emails for this post: > http://www.osehra.org/og_mailinglist/unsubscribe/1299 -- GT.M - Rock solid. Lightning fast. Secure. No compromises. _____________ The information contained in this message is proprietary and/or confidential. If you are not the intended recipient, please: (i) delete the message and all copies; (ii) do not disclose, distribute or use the message in any manner; and (iii) notify the sender immediately. In addition, please be aware that any message addressed to our domain is subject to archiving and review by persons other than the intended recipient. Thank you.
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Comments

re: Licensing

Christopher Goranson's picture

Thanks Bhaskar.  So perhaps I'm getting my terms confused - perhaps I should be referring to 'proprietary' use as opposed to 'commercial' use?  I don't think the opposition here is necessarily to a commercial partner utlizing the designs and / or code-base, but we want to help ensure that any resulting modifications / changes / improvements are shared back to the OSEHRA community.  My understanding was that the LGPL and a more restrictive CC license was one way to do this.  

I'm certainly more than open to suggestions from those more knowledgeable on the topic than I!  Luiz, I know you'd mentioned a while back that you thought some folks in the Linux Red Hat community might have pointers - I think it would be great if we could get a larger conversation going.

Thanks,

Chris

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Re: [architecture] Community-sourced Submission for the VA Sched

K.S. Bhaskar's picture

Chris --

What I say here is clearly based on my bias, personal, and very
subjective. Also, I am not a lawyer (for which everyone thanks their
favorite deity). I manage GT.M (http://fis-gtm.com) an implementation of
MUMPS and a popular platform for VistA. Since 2001, GT.M on Linux on x86
has been free / open source software (FOSS). GT.M is owned by FIS, a
large public company. As an employee of said public company, I feel that
it is my job to do my best to make the most money for my employer.

That said, I see no conflict between FOSS and profitable commerce. We
originally released GT.M as FOSS under GPL v2, moved to GPL v3, and
currently use AGPL v3. While I am not opposed to another organization
making a profit with GT.M, in my opinion, a license with a credible
copyleft is the best protection against someone else hijacking our work
without benefit to the community (and potentially competing with us).

Regards
-- Bhaskar

On 12/18/2012 05:11 PM (US Eastern Time), Chris Goranson wrote:
>
> Thanks Bhaskar. So perhaps I'm getting my terms confused - perhaps I
> should be referring to 'proprietary' use as opposed to 'commercial'
> use? I don't think the opposition here is necessarily to a commercial
> partner utlizing the designs and / or code-base, but we want to help
> ensure that any resulting modifications / changes / improvements are
> shared back to the OSEHRA community. My understanding was that the
> LGPL and a more restrictive CC license was one way to do this.
>
> I'm certainly more than open to suggestions from those more
> knowledgeable on the topic than I! Luiz, I know you'd mentioned a
> while back that you thought some folks in the Linux Red Hat community
> might have pointers - I think it would be great if we could get a
> larger conversation going.
>
> Thanks,
>
> Chris
>
> --
> Full post:
> http://www.osehra.org/discussion/re-architecture-community-sourced-submi...
> <http://www.osehra.org/discussion/re-architecture-community-sourced-submi...
> Manage my subscriptions: http://www.osehra.org/og_mailinglist/subscriptions
> Stop emails for this post:
> http://www.osehra.org/og_mailinglist/unsubscribe/1334

--
GT.M - Rock solid. Lightning fast. Secure. No compromises.

_____________
The information contained in this message is proprietary and/or confidential. If you are not the intended recipient, please: (i) delete the message and all copies; (ii) do not disclose, distribute or use the message in any manner; and (iii) notify the sender immediately. In addition, please be aware that any message addressed to our domain is subject to archiving and review by persons other than the intended recipient. Thank you.

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Re: [architecture] Community-sourced Submission for the VA Sched

Luis Ibanez's picture

Chris,

The term 'proprietary' is also misused in this case.

Unfortunately is a term widely used in colloquial
conversations, to refer to closed source software.

'proprietary' refers to the holding of proprietary rights on
a work of authorship, typically in the form of copyright.

The only software that is not subject to proprietary rights
is software that is in the Public Domain, this is typically
software that was developed by employees of the
US Federal Government (VistA for example).

The rest of the software, since it has copyright holders,
is 'proprietary'. This includes all software that is licensed
under OSI-Approved licenses. In this case, your software,
since you (or your employer) hold on to its copyright, is
also 'proprietary'.

The terms that are useful for categorizing the spectrum of
licenses are: "Permissive" licenses to "Restrictive" licenses.

This is not a binary categorization, but a continuous spectrum.

Permissive licenses allow recipients of the work to exercise
most (if not all) of the right of copyright, and most (if not all)
of the rights of patents, and impose minimal conditions in
exchange (for example, proper attribution and credit)

Restrictive licenses on the other hand, may permit only the
exercise of some of the rights of copyright, and only some
of the rights of patents, while in exchange, they impose an
increasing number of conditions on the exercise of those
rights.

In this continuous spectrum one could go from, most
Permissive license to more Restrictive license as follows:

* CC0 License (the closes one can get to put something in the public domain
in the US)
* MIT License
* BSD License
* Apache 2.0 License
* MPL
* LGPL
* GPL
* AGPL

....etc...

and get to the extreme in the cases
of End User Agreements such as:

* Adobe Acrobat License (that includes authorization to search of your
premises)
* Blizzard License for WoW.(that includes white list and black list of
other software
that you are allowed to run in your computer)

In that spectrum of licenses, as you move more and more
towards the restrictive side, you can notice that Licenses
start being misused as instruments of governance or even
surrogates for law enforcement agencies (e.g. sidestepping
the need of a warrant to search your premises), or instruments
of censorship, (e.g. the Adobe Acrobat license that forbids you
from using the software to write "offensive" texts, terms that
are more appropriate for the Victorian era, and that revive the
historical origins of copyright as an instrument of censorship
in the court of Queen Mary in the 1550's).

As Open Source communities evolve, mature and become more
educated, the fears that prevent open sharing must be overcome,
and more permissive licenses are accepted as better instruments
for empowering the large scale growth of the community.

The common fear that is invoked as the motivation for adopting
reciprocal licenses (e.g. GPL, LGPL and AGPL), is what
economist refer to the desire of "Not Being a Sucker", quoting
from Elinor Ostrom, Nobel Laureate in Economics in 2009,
as she candidly put in his book "Governing the Commons:
The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action".

The basic premise of this fear, is that one want to ensure that
none takes from the common pool of resources, and improves
without giving back. It is indeed a mechanism of preemptive
"conditional compliance" ( e.g. I share only if everybody else
shares as well). Which in itself is evidence for an imperfect
desire for sharing.

This fear is nurtured by a common misunderstanding of the economic
nature of software itself, rooted on what Eric Raymond referred to as
the "Manufacturing Delusion". The notion that software is presented
as a "product" when in reality it is a "service", or more precisely, the
conduit to deliver services.

Those who fear that their software can be "stolen" or "appropriated"
by others have subscribed to the misguided notion that software is a
"product". Or even worst "a finished product", which software never is.

The fear is self-fulfilling when the holders of such software do not make
efforts for growing the community to the size where it can afford and
sustain the cost of ownership of the software (the cost of maintenance
and continuous improvement of the software), which is about
1 developer per every 1,000 lines of code).

In the context of OSEHRA, we are pursuing the creation
of a public good of national and international proportions.

The size of the community that is required to properly
support and nurture an EHR and its ecosystem, includes
thousands of individuals, and hundreds (maybe thousands)
of organizations of diverse nature, including government
agencies (Federal, State and Local), educational institutions
(both for-profit and non-profit), for-profit companies, and
international agencies. The emphasis is in inclusion of
participation and the pursuit of scale (Very Large scale).

Nurturing fear, is not conducive to achieving the scale that
is required in this endeavor. The goal of openness is better
achieved with unconditional openness, leading to unfettered
flow of information, and the realization of network effects in
the economic structure of the community of participants.

In order to play at this scale, organizations and individuals
would have to learn to let go of the desire of control, since
it only jams the gears that lead to large scale participation.

In a true gift-economy, we bring our gifts to the commons,
and we do not attach strings (nor conditions) to them.

It takes time for organizations and individuals to make the
cultural changes that are required to effectively participate
in this open space of a gift-economy, and each one of them
will do at its own pace.

--

Regarding the Creative Commons Non-Commercial license,
and in general, the term of "non-commercial", there is also
a great deal of misunderstanding on its application. Most
activities of non-profit organizations and educational
organizations are considered "commercial" activities.

By choosing a license that prohibits commercial use, one would
exclude the participation of universities, schools, non-for profit
organizations, and of course private business. An effect that is
undesirable in any open source community.

In fact, no OSI-Approved License contains terms that exclude
commercial activities. Such terms would have been at odds with
the Clause #6 of the Open Source Definition:

http://opensource.org/osd.

Worst of all, such exclusions would prevents us from achieving
the scale of community size that is required for sustaining an
Open Source EHR ecosystem.

Luis

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Comprehensive review of software licensing terms

Rafael Richards MD, MS's picture

Luis,

Thank you for your comprehensive and educational review of software licensing terms.  You make a very good point that  treating software as a finished  propetary (closed)  product will have a detrimental effect on a company's ability to be 'agile'.  Large corporations such as Oracle, RedHat, and others understand the need to change, and are moving their products to open-source to attract the largest mind-share of developers and move their product development into high gear. 

It also turns out that coverting their products to open-source can be very profitable.  RedHat grossed over a billion dollars last year in support of its open-source linux server software portfolio.    Cannonical Inc.  similarly had a very good year in support of its open-source Ubuntu linux.   Mirth Corporation, which supports the open-source HL7 integration engine, also is also taking over much of the healthcare data integration market.  And of course, GT.M,  the open-source database that runs Fidelity Systems and many banking systems on Wall street and around the globe is open-source.    This growth in commercially-supported open-source products will likely persist. 

Rafael

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Re: [architecture] Community-sourced Submission for the VA Sched

Sam Habiel's picture

Luis,

Thank you for the good summary. I didn't realize that Adobe's license has a
clause to search your premises. I will try to look for that.

Sam

On Tue, Dec 18, 2012 at 8:32 PM, Luis Ibanez <luis.ibanez@kitware.com>wrote:

> Chris,
>
> The term 'proprietary' is also misused in this case.
>
> Unfortunately is a term widely used in colloquial
> conversations, to refer to closed source software.
>
> 'proprietary' refers to the holding of proprietary rights on
> a work of authorship, typically in the form of copyright.
>
> The only software that is not subject to proprietary rights
> is software that is in the Public Domain, this is typically
> software that was developed by employees of the
> US Federal Government (VistA for example).
>
> The rest of the software, since it has copyright holders,
> is 'proprietary'. This includes all software that is licensed
> under OSI-Approved licenses. In this case, your software,
> since you (or your employer) hold on to its copyright, is
> also 'proprietary'.
>
> The terms that are useful for categorizing the spectrum of
> licenses are: "Permissive" licenses to "Restrictive" licenses.
>
> This is not a binary categorization, but a continuous spectrum.
>
> Permissive licenses allow recipients of the work to exercise
> most (if not all) of the right of copyright, and most (if not all)
> of the rights of patents, and impose minimal conditions in
> exchange (for example, proper attribution and credit)
>
> Restrictive licenses on the other hand, may permit only the
> exercise of some of the rights of copyright, and only some
> of the rights of patents, while in exchange, they impose an
> increasing number of conditions on the exercise of those
> rights.
>
> In this continuous spectrum one could go from, most
> Permissive license to more Restrictive license as follows:
>
>
> * CC0 License (the closes one can get to put something in the public
> domain in the US)
> * MIT License
> * BSD License
> * Apache 2.0 License
> * MPL
> * LGPL
> * GPL
> * AGPL
>
> ....etc...
>
> and get to the extreme in the cases
> of End User Agreements such as:
>
> * Adobe Acrobat License (that includes authorization to search of your
> premises)
> * Blizzard License for WoW.(that includes white list and black list of
> other software
> that you are allowed to run in your computer)
>
>
>
> In that spectrum of licenses, as you move more and more
> towards the restrictive side, you can notice that Licenses
> start being misused as instruments of governance or even
> surrogates for law enforcement agencies (e.g. sidestepping
> the need of a warrant to search your premises), or instruments
> of censorship, (e.g. the Adobe Acrobat license that forbids you
> from using the software to write "offensive" texts, terms that
> are more appropriate for the Victorian era, and that revive the
> historical origins of copyright as an instrument of censorship
> in the court of Queen Mary in the 1550's).
>
>
> As Open Source communities evolve, mature and become more
> educated, the fears that prevent open sharing must be overcome,
> and more permissive licenses are accepted as better instruments
> for empowering the large scale growth of the community.
>
>
> The common fear that is invoked as the motivation for adopting
> reciprocal licenses (e.g. GPL, LGPL and AGPL), is what
> economist refer to the desire of "Not Being a Sucker", quoting
> from Elinor Ostrom, Nobel Laureate in Economics in 2009,
> as she candidly put in his book "Governing the Commons:
> The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action".
>
> The basic premise of this fear, is that one want to ensure that
> none takes from the common pool of resources, and improves
> without giving back. It is indeed a mechanism of preemptive
> "conditional compliance" ( e.g. I share only if everybody else
> shares as well). Which in itself is evidence for an imperfect
> desire for sharing.
>
> This fear is nurtured by a common misunderstanding of the economic
> nature of software itself, rooted on what Eric Raymond referred to as
> the "Manufacturing Delusion". The notion that software is presented
> as a "product" when in reality it is a "service", or more precisely, the
> conduit to deliver services.
>
> Those who fear that their software can be "stolen" or "appropriated"
> by others have subscribed to the misguided notion that software is a
> "product". Or even worst "a finished product", which software never is.
>
> The fear is self-fulfilling when the holders of such software do not make
> efforts for growing the community to the size where it can afford and
> sustain the cost of ownership of the software (the cost of maintenance
> and continuous improvement of the software), which is about
> 1 developer per every 1,000 lines of code).
>
> In the context of OSEHRA, we are pursuing the creation
> of a public good of national and international proportions.
>
> The size of the community that is required to properly
> support and nurture an EHR and its ecosystem, includes
> thousands of individuals, and hundreds (maybe thousands)
> of organizations of diverse nature, including government
> agencies (Federal, State and Local), educational institutions
> (both for-profit and non-profit), for-profit companies, and
> international agencies. The emphasis is in inclusion of
> participation and the pursuit of scale (Very Large scale).
>
> Nurturing fear, is not conducive to achieving the scale that
> is required in this endeavor. The goal of openness is better
> achieved with unconditional openness, leading to unfettered
> flow of information, and the realization of network effects in
> the economic structure of the community of participants.
>
> In order to play at this scale, organizations and individuals
> would have to learn to let go of the desire of control, since
> it only jams the gears that lead to large scale participation.
>
>
> In a true gift-economy, we bring our gifts to the commons,
> and we do not attach strings (nor conditions) to them.
>
> It takes time for organizations and individuals to make the
> cultural changes that are required to effectively participate
> in this open space of a gift-economy, and each one of them
> will do at its own pace.
>
>
> --
>
>
> Regarding the Creative Commons Non-Commercial license,
> and in general, the term of "non-commercial", there is also
> a great deal of misunderstanding on its application. Most
> activities of non-profit organizations and educational
> organizations are considered "commercial" activities.
>
> By choosing a license that prohibits commercial use, one would
> exclude the participation of universities, schools, non-for profit
> organizations, and of course private business. An effect that is
> undesirable in any open source community.
>
> In fact, no OSI-Approved License contains terms that exclude
> commercial activities. Such terms would have been at odds with
> the Clause #6 of the Open Source Definition:
>
> http://opensource.org/osd.
>
>
> Worst of all, such exclusions would prevents us from achieving
> the scale of community size that is required for sustaining an
> Open Source EHR ecosystem.
>
>
> Luis
>
>
>
> --
> Full post:
> http://www.osehra.org/discussion/re-architecture-community-sourced-submi...
> Manage my subscriptions:
> http://www.osehra.org/og_mailinglist/subscriptions
> Stop emails for this post:
> http://www.osehra.org/og_mailinglist/unsubscribe/1334
>

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