What is open source? What qualifies as an open source license? These are not mere philosophical questions, but are a real-world concern for developers, businesses, regulators, and others. Yet there have been only three serious attempts to define the legal requirements of free software/open source (the FSF's Free Software Definition, the Debian Free Software Guidelines, and the OSI's Open Source Definition), and they are now quite dated. In this talk, I will explain why these definitions, and the efforts of the organizations that steward them, have been unsatisfactory. I will propose ways in which open source ecosystem participants can collaborate to develop and apply more useful and well-reasoned principles that establish the boundaries of open source.
This talk is appropriate for all audiences, particularly those with interest in open source legal and policy issues.