June 23rd, 2002


The Tao of Software Licensing

A compendium of software licensing expressed in simple haiku form, as based on a meme by Aaron Swartz.

MIT: take my code with you / and do whatever you want / but please don't blame me

LGPL: you can copy this / but make modified versions / free in source code form

GPL: if you use this code / you and your children's children / must make your source free

RIAA: if you touch this file / my lawyers will come kill you / so kindly refrain

IBM: You really wish that / Our licenses would fit in / merely three short lines.

BSD: Use our code at will / We offer all, ensure nought / Thus, Solaris thrives.

Public Domain: Know that if code falls / under public domain rules / it's complete garbage.

Microsoft: You think our license / Doesn't fall under rules / but we declare a new standard, so deal.

Apple: You may make changes / but all of your code changes / are belong to us.

Would you like to add / another software license? / Leave me a comment.