License for the dictionaries

Bjørn Mork bjorn at
Tue Nov 22 10:43:01 CET 2011

Alan DeKok <aland at> writes:

>   It's come to my attention that we need to clarify the license for the
> dictionaries.  I've recently had "interesting" discussions with people
> off-list.  Some people seem to think that the dictionaries are theirs to
> use as they wish, with no attribution, copyright, etc.
>   I disagree.


>   After some looking around, it appears that the most applicable license
> is the open database license:
>   The dictionaries aren't really "code", so using the GPL seems difficult.

I'm absolutely not a lawyer, so that may be my problem...  But I can't
see the difficulty, really.  The GPLv2 license text starts with

  "0. This License applies to any program or other work ..."

To me, the dictionaries are obviously an example of "other work" which
may be covered by the GPL. Why not?

>   Opinions?

Debian are probably going to be the most "difficult" ones as usual.

There has been some discussion about this license on debian-legal
already, but I don't see any definite conclusion and it's certainly not
on the official OK list yet.  Ref

Maybe it makes sense to open the discussion on debian-legal again?

Unless there is one of the more common licenses already on the whitelist
which can be used instead.  I would really just have used GPLv2 myself.
It has one major advantage:  Most people will know what it means to them
without having to read the fine print of yet another open source


More information about the Freeradius-Devel mailing list