Liferay Switch to LGPL 2.1 License

Liferay have announced that future Liferay Portal products will be released under the Lesser GNU Public License (LGPL) version 2.1.

Liferay have been releasing products under the MIT license for ten years. In an announcement posted at the Liferay website, the company praise MIT's compatibility with the GPL (versions 2 and 3;) its mitigation of risk for prospective adopters of the software; and its adaptability. However, Liferay claim that the license has allowed some companies to redistribute predominantly Liferay software at a cost to the customer, and without providing either monetary compensation to Liferay, or contributing back to the Liferay community in the form of features and bug fixes.

Liferay are adopting the LGPL license in the belief that it provides all the benefits of the MIT license, whilst protecting Liferay from unscrupulous users who have been modifying Liferay’s core and re-distributing it without contributing back to the community. Liferay hope the adoption of this new license will broaden Liferay's reach, as the LGPL enforces the use of a single common platform.

However, not everyone is happy with the switch, with Dave Curry commenting: “our company has a policy preventing the incorporation of any open source product licensed under GPL or LGPL in any of our products,” which means they can now no longer use Liferay Portal.

In the same announcement, Liferay reveal that implementing a marketplace is one of their top goals for 2010. Please see the Liferay blog announcement for more information.

jt

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