[Techtalk] Need a software licensing expert

Erin Mulder meara at alumni.princeton.edu
Sat Oct 25 23:08:11 EST 2003

Hi Brenda,

If you wrote all of the code, then you own the copyright and can release 
it as many times as you like under whatever licenses you choose.   You 
can't prevent people who already got it under GPL from continuing to use 
it under that license, but you can certainly give/license it to others 
under different terms.

There are lots of projects out there that dual license.   Some offer 
code under both GPL and BSD style licenses.   Others offer a choice 
between GPL for free or a non-viral commercial license.   The biggest 
problem in switching a license is usually tracking down all the 
contributors and getting their permission (not a problem if it was all 
written by you).


Brenda Bell wrote:
> I wrote a Java date control for a personal project I was working on and
> decided to release it to the public under the GPL.  I figured if I couldn't
> find an existing one I really liked, others might be in the same boat. 
> Apparently I was correct, because I just received an email from someone
> asking me if I would consider re-releasing it under LGPL.  I understand the
> differences between the two licenses so there aren't any issues in that regard.
> However, I can't find any information that definitively states that it's 
> legal to arbitrarily change the license from GPL to LGPL... or whether
> there are any special steps I need to take in order to do so.
> Does anyone have any good references on this stuff?

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