Linux-SPDX Archive on
 help / color / Atom feed
From: J Lovejoy <>
Subject: efficacy of MODULE_LICENSE
Date: Tue, 9 Jul 2019 22:28:59 -0600
Message-ID: <> (raw)

Hi all,

We seem to have gone a bit quiet recently! Hopefully that’s just a symptom of nicer weather and holiday season, but we can still pick up some momentum :)

I wanted to get your input on the MODULE_LICENSE tag, which I have found to be a bit vexing in some instances. I am finding examples where there is a clearly identifiable license in the file, for example ISC, and then the MODULE_LICENSE tag is something like "Dual BSD/GPL”. There is absolutely no other reference to GPL whatsoever (or any BSD variant for that matter).

Based on my understanding of <> - the MODULE_LICENSE info was never meant to be definitive license info, but seemingly more of an approximation.  I’m wondering if others have a different view?

More specifically - where we have specific license match (like the example above) - we can add the appropriate SPDX identifier, but if we leave the MODULE_LICENSE info, I suspect that scanners will pick that up and report a mix of licensing info (e.g., ISC, BSD, GPL, as in my above example), which kind of brings us to the same place we are now. Should we also remove the MODULE_LICENSE tag where it contradicts the actual license info in terms of an exact license match (i.e., there is nothing to match to GPL here, other than the MODULE_LICENSE tag, but there is an exact match to a different license, ISC, in this case).


             reply index

Thread overview: 7+ messages / expand[flat|nested]  mbox.gz  Atom feed  top
2019-07-10  4:28 J Lovejoy [this message]
2019-07-10  9:38 ` Greg KH
2019-07-10 13:41   ` J Lovejoy
2019-07-10 14:09     ` Armijn Hemel - Tjaldur Software Governance Solutions
2019-07-10 14:12     ` Zavras, Alexios
2019-07-10 18:55       ` Thomas Gleixner
2019-07-10 16:06     ` Greg KH

Reply instructions:

You may reply publicly to this message via plain-text email
using any one of the following methods:

* Save the following mbox file, import it into your mail client,
  and reply-to-all from there: mbox

  Avoid top-posting and favor interleaved quoting:

* Reply using the --to, --cc, and --in-reply-to
  switches of git-send-email(1):

  git send-email \ \ \ \

* If your mail client supports setting the In-Reply-To header
  via mailto: links, try the mailto: link

Linux-SPDX Archive on

Archives are clonable:
	git clone --mirror linux-spdx/git/0.git

	# If you have public-inbox 1.1+ installed, you may
	# initialize and index your mirror using the following commands:
	public-inbox-init -V2 linux-spdx linux-spdx/ \
	public-inbox-index linux-spdx

Example config snippet for mirrors

Newsgroup available over NNTP:

AGPL code for this site: git clone