[arch-dev-public] Kingsoft Office License

Felix Yan felixonmars at gmail.com
Tue Mar 18 13:07:45 EDT 2014

On Tuesday, March 18, 2014 06:41:47 Gaetan Bisson wrote:
> [2014-03-18 16:34:23 +0800] Felix Yan:
> > I recently received a license from Kingsoft to redistribute the office
> > productivity suite "kingsoft-office", and I want your opinion about if it
> > looks good to us, or if any modifications have to be made.
> I skimmed through the license and Section 2 indeed seems pretty bad: we
> must (1) fill out a web form before redistributing the software and (2)
> guide (some? any?) third party who wishes to redistribute it to do so
> lawfully; if there are issue with this third party, we are held jointly
> responsible...

I just got their answer about the web form part, it will be changed in the 
next version, so maybe only one email to let them know "we're packaging it" 
will be enough.

And for the jointly responsibility problem, I've asked them and will hopefully 
get it fixed too.

> Like Andy, I believe we should really avoid proprietary software when
> open source alternatives are good enough. So I guess the question is:
> how bad do you want that office suite in our repos?

I totally agree with this. I think the only argument here is about how 
"enough" applies to. For example, if the use scenario is to start with a new 
document and export it to PDF - I believe LibreOffice can do it well enough; 
But for opening an existing document in Microsoft Office format, editing, and 
saving back to that format - sadly it doesn't work that well.

I'm not sure about the popular document format in the States or others 
(actually I have to work on product docs with clients in the States in .doc 
format too), but in China, .doc and .docx files are just too common to avoid 
with. That said, for users facing this every day, kingsoft-office becomes the 
only Linux-native option, and it works well.

Personally speaking, I want kingsoft-office in our repos just as bad as I want 
steam - and the two companies here are both very glad to have their software 

Felix Yan
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