SPITBOL License now ‘GPL V2 or later’

I have updated the license for MACRO SPITBOL from ‘GPL v3 or later’ to ‘GPL v2 or later’.

This was motivated by a conversation with Rob Landley, who first made me aware that that GPLv2 and GPLv3 are not compatible.

An explanation of why this is so can be found in the following post by Richard Stallman, Why Upgrade to GPL Version 3.

The result of this modest — indeed only the change from ‘3’ to ‘2’ in the license version — is that people wishing to use SPITBOL can now incorporate it in code licensed under any of the following combinations:

  • GPL v2
  • GPL v2 or later
  • GPL v3
  • GPL v3 or later

Contributions will only be accepted under the new terms — gplv2 or later — to give those who choose to use the code more freedom in their choice of license.


  1. paul
    Posted December 11, 2012 at 19:31 | Permalink | Reply

    I think v3 is preferable for the reasons RMS states. In principle this influences my willingness to get involved in a project, though in the case of Spitbol I’m probably just an onlooker either way. (Spitbol is very cool but there’s only so many hours in the day).

    • Posted December 11, 2012 at 20:14 | Permalink | Reply

      You can now use SPITBOL under gplv2 or gplv3. Were it still under gplv3 it would be impossible to use the code in a gplv2-licensed project. That to me is a problem. My guess is that RMS was so concerned about the tivoization issue that he was willing to pay the price of creating an incompatible license.

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