Please note that, between December 2012 and March 2013, a draft EUPL v1.2 is submitted to public consultation.
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The Community's genesis can be traced to the public forum organized by the European Commission after the disclosure of the draft EUPL v.0.1 in June 2005. “What are your views on the Licence? Have you comments on the proposed text or on the principle of a licence that is written with European legislation in mind?” Bernhard Schnittger (IDABC team) asked. This forum generated controversial opinions: strongly against the initiative, or strongly in favour of it. It has a substantial impact on the draft: 10 of the 15 articles were modified and compatibility with the GPL was implemented, producing the EUPL version 1.0 adopted by the European Commission in January 2007 in three linguistic versions (EN/FR/DE).
The next important milestone was the publication of the EUPL in 22 linguistic versions of equal value. All translation reviewers (two lawyers per Member State) and guest experts discussed the text in January 2008. This conference and discussions with OSI produced the EUPL version 1.1, which is certified by OSI since March 2009.
Objective and focus
The objective of the EUPL community is to maintain the focus on F/OSS licensing, especially by public sector authorities. It is to exchange opinions and experiences, to clarify issues and interoperability, to explore new ideas: according to Article 13 of the EUPL, "The European Commission may publish other linguistic versions and/or new versions of this Licence, so far this is required and reasonable, without reducing the scope of the rights granted by the Licence". The previous EUPL elaboration process has demonstrated that your opinions are important and will be taken in consideration.
The forum is open to all (lawyers, developers, project leaders, but not exclusively). Provide the question is relevant to our focus and fairly presented, there will be no taboo: Has the EUPL its place in the “already too many” circle of F/OSS licences? Is maintaining 22 equivalent linguistic versions sustainable? Should the EUPL compatibility be enlarged to licence X or Y?
In the blog, community members will try to provide each other information related to the EUPL and to F/OSS licensing, that may come from various sources.
Last, let's remember that the objective of the EUPL is not to compete or to replace any existing licence: it is to encourage a new wave of F/OSS licensors, especially among public administrations in Europe.
Thierry Aimé, member of the team of the French Ministry for the Budget, Public Accounts and the Civil Service, has authored a “Practical Guide to using Free Software in the Public Sector”.