[Fedora-legal-list] itext AGPL licensing

Richard Fontana rfontana at redhat.com
Tue Aug 3 06:13:48 UTC 2010

itext is currently packaged in Fedora. The license is given in the
package metadata as (LGPLv2+ or MPLv1.1) and ASL 2.0 and BSD and

As of version 5.0.0, the project has relicensed to AGPLv3. The project
says at http://itextpdf.com/terms-of-use/index.php, and in source code

  In accordance with Section 7(b) of the GNU Affero General Public
  License, you must retain the producer line in every PDF that is
  created or manipulated using iText.

This is an additional restriction that is not authorized by section 7
of AGPLv3. 

Possibly also of concern is the statement:

  You can be released from the requirements of the license by
  purchasing a commercial license. Buying such a license is mandatory
  as soon as you develop commercial activities involving the iText
  software without disclosing the source code of your own

While the examples given might generally trigger the AGPL source code
distribution requirement, surely there are conceivable "commercial
activities" that would not trigger it. The fact that the project is
now apparently organized as a dual-licensing commercial venture
justifies heightened scrutiny of such statements.

For these reasons, I propose that any future packaging of
AGPL-licensed releases of itext be subject to explicit approval by
Fedora Legal.

Richard E. Fontana
Red Hat, Inc.

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