Towards an Anti-Pornographic License

I was thinking today that if there are licenses that prohibit someway or the other to be used for certain purposes there should be licenses for the code we write in which we can specify that we don’t want the source code or any derivative work to be used in the sinful pornographic industry of mankind. I think there are world known programmers that would be bound to respect these licenses and some that would not. But the thing is it would be great not to see again guys who use the code licensed thus with a lofty profile.

So hereby i would like to encourage the development of such licenses and any feedback would be most welcome. Of course positive feedback. If you disagree for any reason, please try to convey your expressions within decent conversation else they would be eventually removed. Thanks!

22 thoughts on “Towards an Anti-Pornographic License

    • I thought further and I think there would be the ideal in which for instance we don’t have to create licenses to forbid people to do wrongful things. I mean there is not a license for not doing a good job or the best that we can, yet it is somewhat engraved into our consciences. That is the ethical example. A more neutral example would be a license against-stealing or i don’t know i hope it is more clear now.

      So that is the ideal on one hand. On the other hand, licenses like the one above are good in cases where we need to enforce certain barriers to avoid letting into people into wild. I think it is a valid case to enforce something when there is risk of major damage. It is a good thing to have those but yes nobody is going to change the attitudes or values of people that think otherwise.

      Good talk man, glad you posted. In regard of this, yes I agree, but also let’s not go too far as to say that free software is going to end. It may actually encourage higher quality of software and more trust within the communities.

    • Roman,

      The open source community is also based on views. Whether they are subjective or not, and i don’t imply mine is, is based on review case by case. Your utilitarian view lacks basis for not acting or acting in pro of something. Perhaps there is a stronger reason you think thus, I mean in terms of benefit. It could however be true that we would benefit less because we don’t have the support of high IQ guys from the pornographic industry, but then is this cost too much for your views on morale? What is the price you want to put on them if so. Utilitarianism is not always good see? Sometimes to the extent of being less one has to uphold values.

      • also notice one thing, I am not saying that every piece of FOSS has to bear that license, or will or should for all people. I am just saying and stating the viability of using such a license to predetermine the intent of work done on a subclass of FOSS.

  1. That starts to be a discriminative license. E.g: I don’t like how banks are managing the world crisis, so we also can create an anti-banking license as probabily they create more damage than porn or anti-arms industry… but this doesn’t mean that they can contribute a lot to the software or to the community, and probably a lot of them have a lot more ethics than others that will use the software, as Spammers, Scammers … and many other people that you can’t even imagine.

    If you want to be fully open source, be. Force the people to chose their moral and ethics is a big error. To control problems that gone beyond there are the laws.

    So apply restrictions to open-source that claims to be liberal and open is probabily more hypocrite than privative licenses.

    I’m sorry but I have to say that these ideas are driven more than a personal religion idea than the idea to contribute to the community and make open source software.

    Best Regards.

    • thanks for your comment. I have to agree that the ideas is of course driven by a basis of convictions. I am just exploring the idea. It is good talking and discussing ideas without fear. I think you have several interesting points to ponder. I think this goes in the same sense of your sentence about “To control problems that gone beyond there are the laws.”

      As a community there has to be some kind of governing laws. For instance when you enter a chat of developers there is a code of conduct else you are a troll. The same principle applies in a community contributing to FOSS. Some members take decisions for others etc. This idea springs just to drive the value of a license to protect the effort of contributors from misuse of the software. It is therefore trying to establish and thereby regulating or `forcing` someone to avoid using the package if he or she don’t agree with license terms. Like anything else.

  2. Oh my God, Luis. Where I live the middle age is ended a long time ago! Do you really think the pornographic industry to be the cause of all evil at the point to try restricting the use of Foss software to these people?
    Well, I have to admit that I also think that the porn industry is a problem, but it’s just part of a hugest problem, which is the general moral condition of our society, where porn it’s just a small part of it.
    We endorse and support, every day, an industry which is killing our planet, our culture and our dignity and you find time to focus on the porn industry? Mate, that’s not the problem!
    I’m really sad to see that you religion ideas makes you blind. It’s the odd one, it’s the different one, it’s the black and the white, while you’re not seeing the the only immoral people are exactly those who are trying to make you think this way. The same people who are distracting yourself from the true immoral behaviours of our leaders who really don’t care about the good for the people. Corrupted, evil and inhuman money slaves that are going to f..k the entire population on earth for their own interests . Living in Peru (if I’m not wrong), you should really know what injustice is.
    If one day, I should really consider such a proposition, I will surely do something like this against banks and financial industry, not porn, which is probably the first which supports the pornographic lifestyle. I like to hit the problem where the problem is, porn it’s just a scapegoat.

    • I first respectfully disagree with your assumptions. You had not done your homework on trying to take the arguments and backup your allegations. I should remove your comment for also using connotations which you are not even sure. But I will leave it there to fall on its own weight.

      Thinking further and trying to get good arguments out of this interactions I think it is important to highlight that there are other agents in this world from which we –and we agree on this i believe– are trying to get their hands off our code so to speak. I believe therefore your position is similar to mine in terms of trying to do something in that aisle. Is interesting also to see that your view is utilitarian in the manner of the first comment here. However the last point about seeking justice is good I think and sometimes not often uphold as genuine. Some majority of people would think that you should not seek justice or they would rather have you think otherwise.

      So all in all it is a good contribution to the discussion provided you intended all your points above. Thanks again for giving me more food for thought.

      • I think freedom is freedom and I won’t follow any proposition, whatsoever, that try to limit the freedom of other people.
        I don’t intend to punish anyone. I dont’ think that your kind of proposition could ever be the answer to a social problem.
        If you want to fight a social problem, then you have to find and fight against the source of the problem, not against the product which fulfills the need on which the problem is based, this is witch-hunting.
        Witch-hunting has been one of the favourite sports in centuries to distract people from real problems. So, the problem here is what cause pornography, not pornography itself.
        There are many battle to fight in this World, and this one is not part of those.

        I don’t think mine are allegations. Maybe I’m wrong and what push you in this direction is something completely different, but I lived in the most catholic country in the world for 30 years, where the pope lives, and I’ve heard this kind of talks and propositions every day there.
        But it happens that Illuminism has became part of the human history. Maybe I’m wrong, but I like to think that I’m part of that.

        • I see where you come from. I think i call it barriers to prevent from total depravity. It comes from the law and state of order and its intent is to prevent total depravity so it is like a boundary, not intended to cure disease but to control it, like when one dies of a bad disease doctors help controlling or trying, else disease kills faster and producer more pain than needed.

          Sin is the disease. Good luck fighting with it from inside, it is impossible sorry.

          • Did you really delete Luis Hdez reply?
            I think you are ready for many things, but not for those based on personal freedom, or in general, the respect of others. After pornographic industry, who’s next? Witch-hunting can be directed towards everybody. It’s enough to be “different”, or maybe “immoral from my (very personal) point of view” to be accused and banned.
            Think, Luis, history teaches. This kind of ideas have already been used towards other human beings and they have never brought to anything good.
            Btw, Good luck to you, luckily I don’t have your burden.

  3. @Patrick I did I just judged it not to be dealing with comments but was unfit for this discussion. I think you are approaching that too not discussing arguments, but imposing your way of thinking by just restating things over and over and not really talking in arguments.

    For instance:

    Think, Luis, history teaches. This kind of ideas have already been used towards other human beings and they have never brought to anything good.

    You said history teaches which is nothing new or weighty if not backed up specifically. The fact that ideas are used is nothing new. Maybe you imply or refer to specific cases. I understand your argument of `witch hunting`, but could you please make a good case interacting from both sides and not just like someone that reads one side and buys it entirely? `never brought to anything good` is not really weighty. You are generalizing stuff, not scrutinizing the details. Putting myself in your shoes perhaps I would argue that yes we should not try to take justice into our own hands. This is a good principle but notice that we never said anything close. What we are trying to argue is to convey on the specific will of authorship and the intent of use of a work authored. It is like discussing IP, i don’t want to step into IP however just to put an example: Company A does want to create a specific license for a purpose. In the business world we wouldn’t say it is forbidden or unfair to employ these licenses. You get the idea.

    Thanks again.

  4. I think this would be a huge mistake. “Morale” or “sin” is totally subjective, and utterly personnal. Everyone has its own and every morale should be respected, even if completely antagonist of yours or mine. This belongs to the private life.

    The only limit is things that do wrong to other people, in a clear way. Leave personnal life to person, that doesn’t belong to public.

    • Hi Clement, thanks for joining the brainstorm.

      I may say i am surprised by your answer. Let me restate my case. You work on some code and you should have the ability to craft some license into it of some kind. When you use some package with a license you are not asked to cast your vote on it, you are asked to respect it and comply to it in case you use a piece of software. That is the mechanism we speak of. We never started speaking of at the beginning with either personal lives or etc.

      Second observation I may point to is you are casting stiff absolute statements that are only your true personal views. This does not mean that they are true for everybody but you such as:

      – Morale” or “sin” is totally subjective, and utterly personnal.

      Some people may agree or disagree with you. But you cannot say state something like that and expect it to be true. You have to back it up, make a case, a good one. For instance, it actually reveals you lack understanding of the meaning of sin which includes _offenses to someone other than you_, _harm_ if you would. So you totally contradict yourself when you continue with “The only limit is things that do wrong to other people, in a clear way.” So your statement actually proves you telling contradictions, things that aren’t set straight. Should you have maybe some consistency in your statements maybe you could actually find that such a license perhaps makes more sense and actually considering a ponder on it. But I think what you have is a biased position, now that reason is personal and since it is personal it should be your problem and it is not part of the discussion.

      I could be wrong, so I would like to hear your reply. But if not it i cool no worries. It is just to point out in which way one should talk with good arguments in a discussion. Hope this illustrates that. Other than that I think we are just posing a possibility in this post.

      Thanks again for your comments.

  5. Do not see the need for this discussion. Select one of the classic licences (commercial or not) use that and add a couple of lines that your product uses that licence + whatever restrictions you like,,, Should hold up in court.

    • Agree with Mikael here from an execution standpoint – but I also want to thank and encourage you on standing up and out on your convictions. Restricting your code from being used on porn sites isn’t going to stop porn sites from existing – as Patrick so effectively put it “If you want to fight a social problem, then you have to find and fight against the source of the problem.” I think what you are already doing is hugely positive – produce good code and be consistently and openly thankful for the opportunity that God has given you to do so.

      Perhaps some language around mandatory displayed attribution instead of restriction? As you well know, Christ didn’t avoid the broken and hurting places in the world, he entered into them and shown a light toward a better way.

      Just some thoughts – God bless and keep up the good work!

  6. I think puritanism and religious bias has NOT its place in the opensource community. Because morale changes and passes, it is subject to fashion.

    Something to be considered a sin 300 years ago are now common rules for society. In fact I think it’s just hypocrisy

    • While it is clear that social norms evolve (and hopefully improve) over time, pornography is not such an evolution. The selling of sex and general objectification of women is an ancient practice. The novel idea here is the relatively recent rejection of promiscuity in favor of monogamy.

      Regardless of faith, a stable, safe, and healthy family unit is an incredible asset both to the individuals in them and society taken in whole. One is hard pressed to find a man or woman who delights in the idea of their spouse looking at porn (except perhaps as a misplaced justification of their own compulsion). I for one would despair greatly if either of my children had any connection to it, as I think any parent free from a perverse mental disorder would feel. As every person on earth is someone’s child, the logical conclusion that porn is objectively wrong isn’t hard to arrive at.

      If cordoval doesn’t want his hard work to be used in promotion of the business of selling sex, then he certainly has that right. He may be the minority in a relativistic and desensitized world, but he won’t be alone. I certainly don’t see any hypocrisy in it and find no connection to the equalities won for oppressed minority groups of all kinds in the past several centuries (many of whom were wrongly oppressed in the name of religion). In fact, in the majority of cases porn is a direct or perpetuating force of oppression for nearly all parties involved.

  7. Having just stumbled upon your website and reading a couple of your posts, I think it’s safe to assume that you’re either christian ( please correct me if I’m wrong ).
    This license SHOULD NOT EXIST, not even the idea of it should exist. It’s simply a gateway into more horrible licenses.
    While I do see your point, that a developer should be able to chose who his work goes to and who can use it ( be it either an open source project or a custom project that he got paid for ), the decisions should not be made based on religion, political views, race or color. This is bad on many levels.
    If you think about it, this license is simply saying “If you do not believe in my God and His ( non-porn ) ways, do not use my software!”. Do you not see how wrong that is? Do you not see where this can lead to?
    If I remember correctly from the bible, Jesus said the following:
    – “let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone” ( really? you never watched porn in your life? )
    – “turn the other cheek” ( I fail to read this as attack everyone that doesn’t believe the same things as we do, but instead I read it as no violence, hatred or any kind of attack against our attacker )
    What I don’t remember, is Jesus saying that we should ban porn. Did he ever say that? Did he ever say kill those that do not believe in Him or His father?
    I don’t think so.
    Actually, your license would most likely go against God himself, as he gave everyone free will ( you know, that thing that allows you to do what makes you happy and not what others demand from you? )… Making someone do something because your skewed vision on God goes against one of the most awesome things God gave to humans, don’t you think?
    Having all this in mind, let the middle ages come into Open Source!

  8. Jesus says to the crowd gathered to stone an adulterer “you who is without sin, cast the first stone”… he then says to the rescued woman after the crowd disperses, “I do not condemn you, go and sin no more.”

    Earlier in the sermon on the mount he clarifies “you have heard it said ‘do not commit adultery.’ I tell you the truth, any one who looks at a woman lustfully commits adultery with her in his heart.”

    As for turning the other cheek, I agree that is to promote non-violence and to reveal the striker for what they are (even to themselves), but I fail to see how such a license is a violent response? It is not discriminating based on religion, race, or politics. It is discriminating based on actions. Muslims, atheists, Chinese, democrats, whoever would all be equally free to use the software in any way except promoting adultery.

    Free will is an incredible gift and responsibility. It is not a license to sin. Hebrews 10:26 clarifies this for believers. For non-believers this license wouldn’t stop porn from existing nor them from looking at it. It simply allows a developer to guide the use of his/her freely given gift of code away from uses he/she chooses.

    It isn’t so much a question of judgment or condemnation, but a question of whether it is fair/reasonable for a developer to restrict the use of his/her creation.

    As a believer/developer, Mark 9:42 certainly comes to mind when thinking of my code being used to promote adultery: “And if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to be thrown into the sea with a large millstone tied around his neck.”

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