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  1. Legal Discuss
  2. LEGAL-402

Commons Clause and Apache 2.0



    • Type: Question
    • Status: Closed
    • Priority: Major
    • Resolution: Fixed
    • Component/s: None
    • Labels:


      You may be aware that RedisLabs has recently changed the license for some of its add-on modules to "Apache 2.0 with Commons Clause". Here's the LICENSE file in full as it appears in RediSearch:

       RediSearch Licensing
                       Copyright 2018-2019 Redis Labs Ltd. and Contributors.
      Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License") modified with Commons Clause
      Restriction; you may not use this file except in compliance with the License. You may obtain a
      copy of the License at
      Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software distributed under the
      License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS, WITHOUT WARRANTIES OR CONDITIONS OF ANY
      KIND, either express or implied. See the License for the specific language governing permissions
      and limitations under the License.
      Commons Clause Restriction
      The Software is provided to you by the Licensor under the License, as defined below, subject to
      the following condition.
      Without limiting other conditions in the License, the grant of rights under the License will not
      include, and the License does not grant to you, the right to Sell the Software.
      For purposes of the foregoing, “Sell” means practicing any or all of the rights granted to you
      under the License to provide to third parties, for a fee or other consideration (including without
      limitation fees for hosting or consulting/ support services related to the Software), a product or
      service whose value derives, entirely or substantially, from the functionality of the Software.
      Any license notice or attribution required by the License must also include this Commons Cause
      License Condition notice.
      For purposes of the clause above, the “Licensor” is Redis Labs Ltd., the “License” is the Apache
      License, Version 2.0, and the Software is the RediSearch software provided with this

      The Apache 2.0 license itself is not distributed with the source and the user is expected to visit apache.org to retrieve it. It's disconcerting that people will be arriving at apache.org to read the "Apache 2.0" license for a proprietary product which is not really under that license. The licensing FAQ would appear to be clear that this is not permitted:

      May I Re-use and Modify the Apache License 2.0 Itself?

      if you adapt the agreement for your purposes, you have to make sure that the phrase 'Apache License', 'Apache', or any confusingly similar references or parts that specifically refer to the Apache organization do not appear in your version of the license (except to note that your version is derived and differs from the original provided by the ASF).

      Some clarity is needed urgently before other open source projects adopt this ill-conceived attempt at licensing and the Apache name gets associated with a proprietary license which it has nothing to do with.


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              • Assignee:
                jahewson John Hewson
              • Votes:
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                • Created: