Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Moving from MySQL's Contributor License Agreement (CLA) to Sun's Contributor Agreement (SCA)

Today is Good News Day. In addition to my note on Ivan Nikitin's improved health, I have good news for our current and potential code contributors:

We have moved from having used MySQL AB's own Contributor License Agreement (CLA) to now using the Sun's Contributor Agreement (SCA), which is shorter and easier.



I've been asked about our contributor licensing on several occasions, such as back in July, at MySQL Camp in Bangalore, India, as Parvesh mentioned in his blog.

The MySQL Contributor License Agreement (CLA) was an agreement that we asked patch and feature contributors to sign in order to allow us to use their contributions in MySQL Server, which is licensed both under GPL and under our commercial license. The CLA required that the contributors transfer the copyright of their code to MySQL, while of course retaining a perpetual license to use their code in any way they wanted.

Some of our community members objected to having to transfer the copyright to MySQL. And we took it as our homework to double and triple check whether we really need that strong rights from a legal perspective, when Sun could do with the more light-weight SCA (Sun Contributor Agreement). I'm happy to note that this double-and-triple checking is completed, and we're going to the simpler and clearer SCA. Moreover, the SCA guarantees that your contribution will always be made available as open source. Not that we ever had the intention of revoking that, but I'm sure the contributors will appreciate this guarantee in the SCA.

The whole MySQL Community Team and the MySQL Entineering Team hope that this news is greeted warmly by the greater contributor community. I encourage further feedback as to how we can continue to remove barriers to our community and best collaborate and encourage an "Architecture of Participation".

You can find information about the Sun Contributor Agreement and general
information about the contributor process online at the Contribute section of the MySQL Forge
and take a look at the SCA on Sun's website.

In addition, as a contributor, you can choose to digitally sign the SCA via the MySQL Forge's online contribution system.

Do note that those who already have signed the CLA need to submit the SCA form, if they want their future contributions be covered by the SCA.

To be specific: For those contributors who previously signed the MySQL Contributor License Agreement, your contributions will continue to be governed under the CLA. If you wish to instead have your contributions covered under the new Sun Contributor Agreement (recommended) we encourage you to resubmit under the online SCA form and your contributions will then be covered under the SCA.

Thanks to Jay Pipes for driving this CLA-to-SCA process!

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4 comments:

  1. [...] Moving from MySQL’s Contributor License Agreement (CLA) to Sun’s Contributor Agreement (SCA) -  Kay Arno on why and how they moved from having used MySQL AB’s own Contributor License Agreement (CLA) to using the Sun’s Contributor Agreement (SCA). [...]

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  2. [...] Moving from MySQL’s Contributor License Agreement (CLA) to Sun’s Contributor Agreement (SCA) -  Kay Arno on why and how they moved from having used MySQL AB’s own Contributor License Agreement (CLA) to using the Sun’s Contributor Agreement (SCA). [...]

    ReplyDelete