Joinup Licensing Assistant. A tool to compare licenses

A page, actually a very useful tool, which compares various types of free or Open Source licenses. At first glance, it looks complex and it is, but it’s not complicated if one knows roughly what one needs. If you are looking for the right license to release code, an app, a site, a text, or other, this resource is exactly what you need.

As from June 2019, Joinup proposes a new solution: the JLA, a unique tool allowing everyone to compare and select open licenses based on their content.

The JLA is linked to SPDX (for Software Package Data Exchange), an initiative of the LINUX foundation that attempts to standardize the way in which organizations refer to software licenses: each license is identified by a full name, such as “European Union Public Licence 1.2” and a shorter identifier, here “EUPL-1.2”.

Licenses can be retrieved by entering all or part of their SPDX identifier: for example “UPL” will retrieve both the UPL-1.0 (Universal Permissive License) and the EUPL.

In addition, and that is the true JLA novelty, licenses can be retrieved based on a content analysis taxonomy (where each category is documented).

JLA, choose a license, choosealicense

Compared with other tools, considering just permissions, obligations and prohibitions if any, the JLA adds three important categories: the level of compatibility or interoperability, the legal aspects, and the support that could be expected.

Retrieved licenses are briefly commented and the link with their SPDX full text is provided.

Based on users’ comments and experience, categories may evolve and be adapted.

JLA button

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