It does not help much that someone in a forum says the license will never be enforced
I did not say that, I said EllisLab will not take legal action against you if you add in some code which happens to have a GPL or MIT license into your application.
CI is a framework, you normally build applications on top of it that are often distributed, for example to a client.
The OSL is viral which means if you create a derivate of CI, you need to stick to it for your application - with all the obligations - even if you “only added some code”. That’s a change to the current licensing and has impact on any code you put in there which allowed modification under far less terms. Stick to it does not automatically mean that you must release under OSL as well, but this can be an implication. Just saying, see below as well.
Let’s say I make an application that sells shoes and I want to export my sales data. I’ll dump PHPExcel in there which is GPL. In your view this would be a breach of the OSL license. In my view that is absolutely trivial, irrelevant and a non-issue.
The authors of PHPExcel might not like that type of proceeding. Additionally that looks like you’ll loose the rights under OSL which will infact make you loose the right to even use CI. If you call that absolutely trivial, well, what could be a matter then?
It looks a bit like that it’s some kind of understanding here that OSL would be non-reciprocal and wouldn’t have termination clauses, but as written, I have the feeling this gets stretched too much. It’s reciprocal and it has specific termination clauses, this is very similar to the GPL.
CodeIgniter used to use GPL, now it uses something else. The fact that it was GPL never effected my commercial products, client websites or personal projects for over 6 years. How will this change effect those either?
I don’t remember CodeIgniter was using GPL, however it wasn’t in the recent past. I guess merely the same reasons it changed away from GPL to BSD-like would apply to not change to OSL.
The license is for CodeIgniter, not your application. You can use CodeIgniter IN your application, but it is only CodeIgniter that is licensed.
Well, talk with a lawyer about what a software derivate is, and you then get a feeling that it’s not a topic easy to outline. Anybody who seriously is making use of the CI code under OSL will run into this question and problems and will need to decide upon for the concrete application she or he creates.
The easiest option the OSL leaves here as a viral license is to put your own code under OSL as well. As I read you that is not what is intended, but I can not see that in the license choice.
This won’t work for existing applications that would like to benefit from framework upgrades.
I don’t say that OSL is a bad license, it’s just that CI is not coming out of nowhere and it doesn’t look like a well fitting new suit.
You say MIT is better. Why, specifically?
I suggested MIT because it’s a BSD-like license like the one in CI-2.
MIT/BSD type licenses have a lot of benefits:
1. Well known.
2. Easy to deal with, developer friendly.
3. Compatibility to existing code: It’s a permissive license much closer to the CI 2 license. This would be compatible to the current use-practices.
4. Generally a permissive license is well fitting for a PHP framework, look around to the other frameworks that exist. For example Zend Framework, Symfony and many others. Wikipedia has a listing.
5. MIT is generally pretty compatible to any other license out there if it comes to integrate third party libraries. That’s like 2., it’s developer friendly and will offer the needed options for users of a framework.
6. Less license proliferation. OSL is not commonly used in the PHP world - if at all.