[PD] rjdj is gone, robotcowboy is coming ...

Simon Wise simonzwise at gmail.com
Sat Nov 3 03:05:20 CET 2012

On 02/11/12 11:04, Scott R. Looney wrote:
> i had heard that to be totally safe you needed to use MIT or BSD licensing
> on the external. has anyone found that to be generally true?

To sell an app on the App Store you give apple a license to distribute it and 
they agree to give you 70% (or so) of what they sell each DRM locked copy for, 
the business model here is selling the right to use individual copies of 
binaries of Apps. The end user license that the App Store offers is the right to 
use a copy the App in a restricted way in exchange for a one-off payment.

Any code that is Public Domain, or at least licensed so that there is no 
restriction on redistribution of the binaries is compatible with that model. Any 
code that requires the distributor to provide source code is not, Apple does not 
like that and will not do so.

So if by 'safe' you mean compliant with the needs of Apples business model then 
giving them a license for code which is Pubic Domain is 'safe', as is giving 
them a license any code that can be redistributed as closed source binaries.

Any copyleft license that restricts use of the code to open source projects only 
by requiring the distributor to provide the source code is 'unsafe'. It is 
unacceptable to Apple and will not fit in their App Store.

I believe most GPL code is intentionally copyleft, the (original) developers 
actively did not want to give it away for use in closed source projects.

Many are willing to sell their code to closed source projects with a different 
license, but of course each contributor must agree to the license given to Apple 
and many would want to be given a reasonable share of that 70% in exchange for 
the use of that code. If that 70% is actually $0 then they must be willing to 
allow closed source, DRM locked redistribution of their code without payment. 
That may well conflict with their own business model, they may consider this 


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