[Replicant] Anyone willing to fork OsmAnd?

Wolfgang Wiedmeyer wreg at wiedmeyer.de
Fri Mar 24 16:46:13 UTC 2017

Hi all,

While I looked into the issue whether all apps in F-Droid are compliant
with the GNU Free System Distribution Guidelines[1], it turned out that
OsmAnd is definitely not compliant with the guidelines and thus
shouldn't be available in Replicant (by default). OsmAnd does not allow
to copy and redistribute its artwork for any purpose which violates the
non-functional data section of the guidelines[2].

Although this issue is not directly related to Replicant, I think it
still affects most of its users as it is a very popular app. Going
through their license[3], it even became questionable if the app as a
whole can be considered free software. Contacting them about it didn't
lead to a satisfying answer[4].

A fork is needed to ensure that the app is free software and that it
respects the GNU Free System Distribution Guidelines. Of course, it
would even be better if a fork could manage to have everything
(including artwork and other non-functional data) under a free license.
A fork would make it possible to remove all the nonfree artwork under
distrbution restrictions and would ensure that a compiled binary can be
distributed freely.

It looks like the artwork is tightly coupled to the source code and it's
not entirely clear if source code is covered under a nonfree licence. It
is at least not straightforward to patch the source to get a version
that can be distributed freely. There are also icons and voice files
where the licence is not clear. The response to my inquiry also doesn't
answer this.

Unfortunately, I won't have the time to work on this. This is why I'm
asking the community if anyone is willing to work on this. I think
working on this only requires little coding experience and there are
helpful people around that can be asked for assistance (e.g. F-Droid
developers). Perseverance and creativity for creating artwork is
probably more required. And legal advice from the community may also be
needed, depending on how cooperative the OsmAnd developers will be in
figuring out the licensing of different files. I'm pretty sure that all
F-Droid developers and users will be happy about such a fork.


[1]  http://redmine.replicant.us/issues/1629

[2]  https://www.gnu.org/distros/free-system-distribution-guidelines.html#non-functional-data

[3]  https://github.com/osmandapp/Osmand/blob/master/LICENSE

[4]  https://github.com/osmandapp/Osmand/issues/3578

Website: https://fossencdi.org
OpenPGP: 0F30 D1A0 2F73 F70A 6FEE  048E 5816 A24C 1075 7FC4
Key download: https://wiedmeyer.de/keys/ww.asc
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