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Proposal: License duration

A license could retain a value (in percent) of the remaining license duration. The common license duration could be ten years and the license would retain a recommended value of half its original price after five years (minus deductions for being out of date). This would allow to resell software licenses and would motivate people to purchase new licenses after an adequate duration.

Proposal: Licensor policies

Licensors can base their policies and/or code of conduct on ideas from the Seven Principles of Social Business. These do not really apply here but the general idea should be clear.

For instance:

  • Business objective will be to overcome poverty, or one or more problems (such as education, health, technology access, and environment) which threaten people and society; not profit maximization
  • Investors get back their investment amount only. No dividend is given beyond investment money

Proposal: Licensee policies

The CSL license could be revised to encourage licensors to demand Corporate Social Responsibility standards from licensees. A program could, for instance, be available for free to licensees with adequate CSR standards (and for very small enterprises) but would otherwise require a standardized "CSL minimum licensing fee".

Proposal: CSL Membership License

At a fixed annual cost access to all software under CSL Membership License could be made available. CSL-EDU could be a special case for education providers. This license would allow a community of users and programmers with open access, similar to the open source community.

A better wording could be "culture flatrate".

Proposal: CSL-EDU

The CSL-EDU license would be a special license for education providers. At a fixed cost the education provider can license all software that is made available under the CSL-EDU license. Licensor and education provider can negotiate the cost according to published policies of the Licensor. The Licensor is responsible to provide a license management system that allows to distribute and revoke licenses for students conveniently and to make software released under the CSL-EDU compatible with the licensing scheme. Licensors who do not meet that criterion cannot sell site licenses for education providers.

Proposal: Modular design

This is not a license issue but a design recommendation. CSL programs can build on a freely available core but allow plugins, extensions or related programs (e.g. similar to Firefox or Eclipse plugins) under the CSL license. One would probably want an option in the CSL license to either allow or disallow commercial plugins under different licenses.

Proposal: CSL SDK license

A CSL SDK license could be a license to develop commercial plugins for a CSL-licensed program. This could be seen as a middle ground between trying to prohibit commercial plugins and allowing commercial plugins without restrictions. A CSL SDK license should have an annual licensing fee, possibly in percent of the generated revenue. A commercial vendor would always be free to make his plugins usable in a different container program but might lose the community around the CSL-licensed program.

An interesting consideration here may be: "If you accept a moral obligation to educate/motivate others, how much motivation are you willing to provide?" One could, for instance, make payment of the full license fee voluntary but revoke the license below a minimum threshold. The rationale is that a voluntary component is a precondition of free will, while the motivation appears to be a necessary response to poverty, consequently an intermediate position may be desirable (the free will of higher-order volitions, however, is likely to be the decision to make the voluntary contribution, not to use the resources to "do what you want").

The above statement may implicitly aim to make you observe that "many companies have sufficient opportunity to exert free will, especially the management, and that can hardly be the most relevant concern here", to which a communist AI would probably remark "Thank you (for that assessment)."

Proposal: Free license

CSL-licensed software can be made available for free. The interested licensee has to submit a 500 word essay explaining his eligibility with at least 5 relevant references to the categorical imperative. Participants can also win a cruise. The expectation is, of course, that most people will run into an argumentative dilemma.



The org.json Java library has a BSD-like license with the additional requirement "The Software shall be used for Good, not Evil."

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