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Wanted: an AGPL alternative that isn't totally insane (like the AGPL), but still protects open projects from being consumed by exploitative businesses.

No, I don't know if that's possible. Maybe the insanity is the only way that works.

@dl
Why do you describe #AGPL as "insane"? As I understand it, it's just GPLv3 plus a clarification that serving the software over a network counts as distribution, thus triggering the license terms.

@strypey The AGPL activates on *any* network interaction. So, say, sshing to a system to start the software could count.

It may seem illogical, but the law is what you can argue over, and this exposes everyone to legal risk. What risk is acceptable varies, of course, but it's not zero.

@dl
> sshing to a system to start the software could count.

OK, but anyone SSHing into the system will have access to source code for any AGPL software on the system. I don't see why this is a problem.

@strypey They might also have to AGPL any software connected to that system, and then AGPL software that connects to that.. It's only not a problem if you are a fully committed AGPL shop.

One could say that was working as intended, but I don't think that was the intent. I could be wrong about that, I guess!

@dl
#IANAL but I think you may be overestimating the reach of both copyright law and AGPL. AFAIK
the copyleft provision only obliges distributors to make available source code for software under AGPL, and modified versions thereof. I don't believe it magically places all software on the same server under AGPL, let alone on any connected system. Can anyone with more legal knowledge clarify?

#copyleft #AGPL

@dl
There's been a lot of FUD spread about AGPL. Mainly by corporations who like to profit off all the free labour done by volunteer contributors to free code packages, while implicitly pretending they write all their own software in-house. They can do that when most of the free code they use is under non-copyleft licenses, or even copyleft licenses that don't specify that provision over a network is "distribution". They know if AGPL became popular, they wouldn't be able to do it as easily.

@strypey FWIW, I totally agree with those aims. I also am not a lawyer, but lawyers I trust have said that it triggers more often than you think, both in terms of source sharing and virality.

Hence my original post.

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