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Angband OpenSource Initiative

Angband and it's predecessor Moria have been written before the OpenSource concept had gained widespread popularity. But it's creators always wanted the game to be freely available so they created their own license that should ensure that Angband and Moria will always be free.

The traditional Angband license as it appears in Angband 2.9.0 is:

Copyright (c) 1997 Ben Harrison, James E. Wilson, Robert A. Koeneke

This software may be copied and distributed for educational, research,
and not for profit purposes provided that this copyright and statement
are included in all such copies.  Other copyrights may also apply.
Unfortunatly this license doesn't qualify as OpenSource (releasing the source code of changed versions is not required) and has some other weaknesses. As a result Angband can't be placed legally on Linux distributions, can not use the many facilities offered freely to OpenSource projects (like SourceForge), and can't use code that is available under the GPL.

I started the Angband OpenSource Initiative to overcome these weaknesses and try to place Angband (and any variant that wants to share the benefits from this change) under the GNU General Public License.

A change of licenses requires either to get everybody who's code is included in Angband to agree to the new license, or to do a complete rewrite of all parts that are not released under the new license by their authors.

Moving Angband to the GPL would also force all variant maintainers to switch to the new license if they want to use parts of Angband in their variant. That's why I decided to use a "dual license" that allows the code to be released under both the GPL and the Angband license. This way no variant maintainer is forced to switch to the new license since they can decide to continue to use the Angband license.

Note that at the moment the dual license applies only to the parts of the Angband source that have been written by the supporters of the Angband OpenSource Initiative. It doesn't influence the current distribution as a whole, since parts of the source are still only available under the old Moria/Angband license. Until all parts of Angband are distributed under both licenses the only valid license for the whole program remains the original Moria/Angband license.

To release your changes under both licenses you can use the following small text and email it to me.

I hereby release [insert name of your patch here or 'all my changes
to the Angband code'], under the terms of the GNU General Public License
(version 2), as well as under the traditional Angband license.  It may be
redistributed under the terms of the GPL (version 2 or any later version),
or under the terms of the traditional Angband license.
You can also release all your changes to Angband into the public domain and give away all your rights on them if you want. Just drop me a note and I'll add you to the list.
At the moment the Angband OpenSource Initiative is supported by the following developers:
© 2000 by Robert Rühlmann, rr9@thangorodrim.net [News] [To the Development Page]