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From "Robert Burrell Donkin" <>
Subject Re: Re: Thrift Status?
Date Fri, 09 May 2008 13:19:53 GMT
On Thu, May 8, 2008 at 11:54 PM, David Reiss <> wrote:
>>> My understanding was that we also needed to get ICLAs from anyone who
>>> has contributed patches to Thrift.
>> I would think that depended on the terms of their contributions,
>> wouldn't it?  Nearly all of the Thrift source files say "Copyright (c)
>> Facebook".  If contributors in fact assigned the copyright of all
>> contributions to Facebook, then wouldn't we only need a software grant
>> from Facebook, since it has clear title to the code?
> Sigh.  We took the time to get copyright assignment on some, but not all
> of the external contributions.  Is an email agreement of copyright
> assignment enough, or do we need to get another signed document from all
> of these people.

we can't involve ourselves with the means by which the copyright
license required to grant us the rights required is obtained. if you
are confident that you own the copyright then we're happy to take you
at your word unless we hear otherwise.

>> There are two separate things we need:
>>   1. ICLAs for each committer before they can start committing at Apache;
>>   2. Permission from the copyright owner(s) of the existing code to
>> change its license to the Apache license.
>> The CCLA can be used for (2), but I think ICLA only addresses (1).  So I
>> don't see that we need ICLAs from any but project committers.
> Okay.  So does this mean that future contributors will only need to
> certify over email that they allow Apache to distribute their patches
> under the terms in the software grant document?

patches are interesting :-)

AL2 section 5 means that no ICLA is required but regular or major
contributions should be asked to sign a ICLA since it's cleaner and

committers require a ICLA and we ask for a CCLA if that's required.
whether a CCLA is required depends on their employment contract and
it's legal jurisdiction so not everyone requires one. it's a matter
for the committer to determine whether they require a CCLA but most US
employees will require one before they have the rights required to
sign an ICLA.


>>> I cannot go back to
>>> our CEO to get a CCLA signed for each engineer who contributes to
>>> Thrift, so I need to know what other, more scalable options are
>>> available.
>> The CCLA is recommended but not required for ongoing contributions.  Its
>> primary purpose is to clarify things between the employer and the
>> employee, since contributing to an open source project without
>> permission is frequently a violation of one's employment contract, so
>> having this permission in writing filed with an external entity makes
>> things abundantly clear.  So, as long as Facebook management has made it
>> clear that it intends for its employees to contribute their work on
>> Thrift to Apache, I wouldn't worry about having a CCLA for each of them.
> This sounds fine.  Given that we already sent in a CCLA with about 30
> names on it, I think it can be assumed that Facebook intends for its
> employees to contribute to Thrift.

whether an employee is happy to sign an ICLAs without a CCLA on file
should be a private matter. all that is required is an ICLA and an
understanding that the contributor may require a CCLA to be able to
grant the required rights.

- robert

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