[Interest] Qt free software policy

Tuukka Turunen tuukka.turunen at qt.io
Thu Aug 15 06:15:52 CEST 2019


“This is wrong to say that the only alternative to Commercial + GPLv3 is Commercial only.”

I did not say the _only_ alternative. Some new things are LGPL exactly to grow the user base. Qt for Python being one of such.

Yours,

                Tuukka

From: Benjamin TERRIER <b.terrier at gmail.com>
Date: Wednesday, 14 August 2019 at 22.18
To: Tuukka Turunen <tuukka.turunen at qt.io>
Cc: qt qt <interest at qt-project.org>
Subject: Re: [Interest] Qt free software policy



Le mer. 14 août 2019 à 20:36, Tuukka Turunen <tuukka.turunen at qt.io<mailto:tuukka.turunen at qt.io>> a écrit :

Hi,

Qt’s approach to open-source is publicly described, but perhaps a bit hidden, check for example:

· Section 3 of https://www.qt.io/faq/

· https://wiki.qt.io/Qt_Project_Open_Governance

· https://www.qt.io/licensing/

These pages are just presenting the current licensing options.
They do not cover how The Qt Company view the licensing of future Qt modules.

We have been releasing new add-on modules under GPLv3 and commercial licenses with intention of growing the adoption of commercial license for those making closed-source applications with Qt. Alternative for using GPLv3 and commercial would be to only offer these add-ons separately under a commercial license, which would mean not even those who are ok with GPLv3 license could use these add-ons. Some of such components do exist, but most of our code is available under an open-source license as well.

This is wrong to say that the only alternative to Commercial + GPLv3 is Commercial only.
The new add-ons modules could be provided as GPLv3 + GPLv2 + LGPLv3.
I understand the will to grow "the adoption of commercial license", but I believe that some modules which have a lot of alternatives available could be licensed also under GPLv2 and/or LPGLv3 without going against "the adoption of commercial license".
Also having more module on LGPL can grow the Qt community leading to indirect sales of the commercial license.

For instance when I work on GPLv3 projects I can use all Qt add-ons, but when I work on GPLv2 or LGPLv3 project I cannot use the most recent Qt modules.
Which means that I have to find an alternative anyway. In the end I do not use these Qt add-ons, even for the GPLv3 projects as I have an alternative ready.

At the same time we have developed a lot of new functionality, done a lot of improvements, and fixed a lot of bugs in functionality available also with LGPL license. This is a big investment, which directly benefits all Qt users whether they distribute their applications under LGPL, GPL or commercial license. Just look at the amount of new and changed code and you can see that the LGPLv3 parts are clearly not some legacy functionality, but very actively developed areas of Qt.

I am not denying that.
It is just that all the novelties are GPLv3 only and I think it should be made clear to the community that new LGPL modules are not to be expected.

BR

Benjamin
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