CC0 has been listed by Fedora as a 'good' license for code and content
(corresponding to allowed and allowed-content under the new system).
We plan to classify CC0 as allowed-content only, so that CC0 would no
longer be allowed for code. This is a fairly unusual change and may
have an impact on a nontrivial number of Fedora packages (that is not
clear to me right now), and we may grant a carveout for existing
packages that include CC0-covered code. While we are moving towards a
process in which license approvals are going to be done primarily
through the Fedora license data repository on gitlab.com
, I wanted to
note this on the mailing list because of the significance of the
The reason for the change: Over a long period of time a consensus has
been building in FOSS that licenses that preclude any form of patent
licensing or patent forbearance cannot be considered FOSS. CC0 has a
clause that says: "No trademark or patent rights held by Affirmer are
waived, abandoned, surrendered, licensed or otherwise affected by this
document." (The trademark side of that clause is nonproblematic from a
FOSS licensing norms standpoint.) The regular Creative Commons
licenses have similar clauses.
A few months ago we approved ODbL as a content license; this license
contained its own "no patent license" clause. Up till this time, the
official informal policy of Fedora has been that 'content' licenses
must meet the standards for 'code' licenses except that they can
prohibit modification. The new Fedora legal documentation on the
license approval categories will note that allowed-content licenses
can also have a no-patent-license clause. In a FOSS development and
distribution context, the absence of patent licensing for non-software
material is of significantly less concern than the software case.
Feel free to ask any questions or make any comments about this!