Freedom of Port 25 Content

by MichaelF on August 21, 2006 11:49am


We've spent several weeks going through the process of freeing the content on Port 25 so that it can be freely reused.  I feel that this is very important in order for this site to be truly useful to the community.


The changes we've made (which are detailed here) are basically this:

o    All code posted on Port 25 (from a legal perspective, compilation and setup instructions are considered code) can be freely reused, excerpted, modified, commercialized, or just about anything else, unless otherwise noted and we’re trying hard not to make exceptions.  The specific license for this is the MS-PL, or Microsoft Permissive License, located here.  It's a BSD-like license that encourages broad use, granting worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free copyright and patent rights.

o    The articles (including video interviews and podcasts) can be copied and hosted elsewhere, printed, etc., as long as they are reproduced in whole - similiar to the Creative Commons by-nc-nd license (Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives). 


We decided not to standardize all Port 25 content under a standard Creative Commons license because it would make it harder to get material up to the site - for example, interviews with and articles by third parties would have to go through a whole new level of process to get their authorization to move the content to Creative Commons.  Frankly, my day job running the lab takes enough time and energy as it is without taking on additional licensing negotiations for our content.


We'll be considering licensing articles & interviews under Creative Commons licenses which would allow remixing, etc. on a case-by-case basis. 


I think this is a big deal.  It took us quite a while because no Microsoft site has ever done this (like other things on Port 25, such as interviewing Miguel de Icaza - thanks for your time and candor, Miguel!).  But it's done, I'm happy with it, and I believe that you'll find this to be a great change.






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