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What license does the linux spotify client use?

What license does the linux spotify client use?

prometheanfire

I'm looking to package this and need this info (as-is may work, but a real license would be best).

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24 Replies

Peter__

I'm pretty certain that Spotify is proprietry (non-free) software on all platforms. 

All information on third-party libraries included in Spotify can be found in the Help > Show Licenses window. 

 

Peter

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prometheanfire

That tells me about the license of the libraries that spotify links in, but not of the spotify client in and of itself.  This is the only blocker to me adding the package to our base repo 😞

Peter__

I would suggest you drop the Spotify team a message using the online contact form so you get an official reply.

 

Peter

Peter
Spotify Community Mentor and Troubleshooter

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leamas

Hm... also interested in this. Could  you please report back here if/when you get an ófficial reply?

prometheanfire

sure, all I know is that they (nik and dan) are asking about it internally.

leamas

If you have a dialog with them, why not just propose "Re-distributable, no changes permitted" which I guess  might be a reasonable option given the circumstances. Note that I (and perhaps also  you)  need to repackage things, without changing any binary.

leamas

It's strange there's no answer to this. Trying to analyze the situation there are two questions: if the client is redistributable and if it can be repacked.

 

After a quick search I can't find any limitations on distribution for the linux nor the windows client. Also, windows clients are redistributed from other download servers than Spotify's. Together with the obvious "risk" of redistribution when creating a .deb package without such licensing restrictions it makes me feel that the package could be considered redistributable.

 

Also, I can't find any restrictions on repacking. The license conditions are designed to stop tinkering with the code, authentication etc. However, repacking is nothing of this.

 

Another aspect is that Spotify has an interest in distributing the client. If it hits major Linux repos, it will attract more Spotify users, both paying and free. So it shouldn't really be a problem.

 

Bottom line: without any other info from Spotify I'll assume the terms are "Re-distributable, no modifications permitted", with an exception that repacking the .deb archive is allowed.

 

Rpmfusion review request: https://bugzilla.rpmfusion.org/show_bug.cgi?id=2565

prometheanfire

This is what I did for gentoo.

 

Here is the licence I used.

 

http://sources.gentoo.org/cgi-bin/viewvc.cgi/gentoo-x86/licenses/Spotify?revision=1.1&view=markup

 

And here is the ebuild I used.

http://sources.gentoo.org/cgi-bin/viewvc.cgi/gentoo-x86/media-sound/spotify/

 

Note that I have RESTRICT="mirror" there.

http://devmanual.gentoo.org/general-concepts/mirrors/index.html#restricting-automatic-mirroring

 

I think this is the most compliant with spotify and safest to use.

leamas

For better or worse, RPM does not have this flexibility. My two options is either a spec like the  one I have submitted, presuming the package is re-distributable. Or  to create a package like download-build-spotify which downloads the binaries and builds the rpms on behalf o fthe user. However, this is not as nice from a user perspective.

 

So, I'll still presume that the package is re-distributable. Doing this openly here should avoid any conflicts, I'll just retire the package if/when  Spotify clarifies that this is not the case.

 

If they are irritated anyway, I might talk to them gently in Swedish - that should solve any possible problem 😉

 

That said, this is a very strange situation. Why doesn't Spotify clarify the terms of use? One might guess the issue has get stuck in their legal dept...

nikreiman

Disclaimer: I work at Spotify

 

At the moment, Spotify doesn't have a specific license agreement for the client software. However, the end-user agreement applies to the client software as well:

 

http://www.spotify.com/se/legal/end-user-agreement/

 

According to my colleagues in the legal team, until we have a more specific set of licensing terms for the desktop software, it's best to assume that the license is for personal use, non-modifiable and non-redistributable.

leamas

Sad, indeed. This means that this package can't go into rpmfusion (and probably no other Linux distro). I will withdraw my review request.

 

I note that there's no indication on that more elaborated license terms for the Linux  client are under way. Together with the time required to get this simple message, I guess such terms are not here shortly.

 

Bottom line : a sad message: For Fedora users, for all other non-Ubuntu Linux users and for Spotify sales dept. And, not the least, for the excellent devs who have created this package.

 

 

 

prometheanfire

From what I've been told in irc, this is being worked on.  Until then, use gentoo 😛

hēnk
Nothing is stopping you from creating a Spotify installer (like the ones for corefonts and flash).

leamas

Certainly not. However,  I feel that the value of such an installer is limited. I will update the descriptions here in my post on how to roll your own RPM from the spec file. Besides that, I'll wait until the license becomes usable.

 

EDIT: fixing link

leamas

Thinking loud about the re-distribution issue: If re-distribution is a problem (although I don't really see why):  couldn't Spotify create some simple infrastructure for community-driven packaging for different distros, keeping some control over what goes away? After all, most distros will not accept a prebuilt binary package in their repos anyway.

 

Normally liability could be a problem but it should be possible to handle with some proper disclaimers, I guess. After  all, the complete Linux client is just a demo -  Spotify as organization takes to responsibility for this "thing" which isn't a product, just a piece if fine work from some developers.

Dexter1979

I have been watching this thread and decided to comment. I would like to create a repo for openSUSE and was wondering the excact same thing. There are wonderful people who have made a script to convert the official deb into a RPM without alterations and I would like to add this RPM and all requirements to a repo to be used for openSUSE.

 

Or Spotify could do the same as Skype and Google did and just make a RPM available and safe us all the bother!

Rorey

We don't allow repackaging and hosting of the Linux application. Yet we understand that Linux enthusiasts would like to be granted permission to repackage the client for the purposes of the hobbyist. So I wanted to let you know that repackaging of the client without hosting it for others is ok. Under these conditions, Linux hobbyists won't be hunted down by a pack of Spotify wolves. However, we will be inclined to remove links to any repackaged apks on the Spotify Community. I hope this clears things up.

leamas

OK, about to make an installer which downloads and builds a rpm file locally which should be OK under these conditions. Normally, there would be a LICENSE file or so explaining the license conditions. SInce there isn't, I will use the following text:

The spotify linux client license conditions are explained in [1]. These 
includes:
   - This package is made by some spotify employees on their spare time.
     It is deliverad on a as-is basis and without any support.
   - You may not re-distribute the package

Besides these linux specific restrictions, all use of the spotify streaming 
service is governed by [2]

[1] http://community.spotify.com/t5/Help-Desktop-Linux-Mac-and/What-license-does-the-linux-spotify-clien...

[2] http://www.spotify.com/se/legal/end-user-agreement/

 

leamas

The previous message was an implicit question. To be more explicit:

 

Basically I have understood that while hosting rpm packages for non-debian distributions is prohibited it's OK to build a rpm for personal use from the debian packages and/or the distribution tarballs..

 

I have now submitted a review request [3]  for a Fedora package which does not contain anything from the spotify linux client. However, the package is capable of downloading and building a rpm package to be used on the local system. Basically, this means that Fedora would distribute an automated way to do the same thing as the manual procedure described in  [2] and in existing archlinux and suse packages [4], [5].

 

Note that the proposed packaging [3] forces user to accept the terms of use (provisionary as described above) to build a personal rpm.

 

As can be seen in the review request [3], I will not be able to do this without a clear statement from a Spotify  representative that it's OK  for Fedora to distribute such a recipe. Which boils down to a simple question: would it be OK for Fedora (and others) to distribute an automatic way to download and build a rpm for personal use using the debian packages and/or the generic tarball?

 

--alec

 

[1] http://community.spotify.com/t5/Help-Desktop-Linux-Mac-and/What-license-does-the-linux-spotify-clien...

[2] http://community.spotify.com/t5/Help-Desktop-Linux-Mac-and/Linux-Fedora-RPM-package-for-F17-F18/m-p/...

[3] https://bugzilla.redhat.com/show_bug.cgi?id=973069

[4] https://aur.archlinux.org/packages/spotify/

[5] http://pkgs.org/opensuse-12.3/packman-i586/spotify-installer-0.8.8.323.gd143501.250-5.1.noarch.rpm.h... (needs an update)

 

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