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21 Copyright and Licencing

SXEmacs is an Open Source project. Because of that we can only accept code and contributions that are covered by an Open Source licence.

We differ from the GNU/Emacs project in that we will accept any OSI approved Open Source licence, not just the GNU GPL. That means that if you are more comfortable with, say, the BSD licence, that’s cool by us.

We also won’t ask you to reassign your copyright to anyone else. If you want to reassign your copyright to the FSF (for example), you can, but we won’t reject any contributions from you because you haven’t. 6

SXEmacs and your Employer

This is very important. If you write code for SXEmacs either on your employer’s time (while you are at work), or using your employer’s resources (hardware, software, electricity, furniture, etc) then your employer may have legal copyright of your work.

PLEASE be up front with your employer and clear it with them before you write anything for SXEmacs. It is OK and perfectly acceptable to submit contributions to SXEmacs that are copyrighted to your employer, providing (and this is the key) your employer is willing to release the code under an approved OSI licence.

Don’t overlook or dismiss this. It is here to safeguard you, your employer, the SXEmacs project as a whole, and Steve Youngs personally.

Documentation Licences

Please don’t licence any documentation under the FSF’s new Free Documentation Licence. This isn’t a slight against the FSF or the GNU project, it is just because it will mean that our documentation would not be able to be included in XEmacs. It may even cause problems going the other way as well (XEmacs to SXEmacs).

For that reason, we’ll err on the side of caution.



If you contribute code to SXEmacs that you want included in GNU/Emacs you will have to reassign copyright to the FSF. Please understand that that is a GNU/Emacs requirement and not a SXEmacs requirement

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