Mozilla is best known for its Firefox browser. (Picture from Wikimedia.)
Call it one small step by a licensor, one giant leap against license proliferation.
The most important result may be to make it easy for Google Code contributions to move into the browser. Google is a big supporter of the Apache license.
The Black Duck Knowledge Center currently lists Mozilla as the 10th most popular open source license with 1.22% of the market. Apache is 7th with 4.01%. The three main GPL licenses -- GPL V.2, LGPL, and GPL V. 3 -- together represent more than 60% of the license market.
Most open source license proliferation involves the rules under which sharing takes place. The OSI's License Proliferation Committee says there are dozens of OSI-approved licenses out there but only nine (including Apache and Mozilla) have what it calls "strong communities" around them.
License proliferation is a big issue among big companies, since some licenses have terms that contradict one another, forcing corporate projects to be built with multi-license distributions that can be confusing.
Version 1.0 of the Mozilla Public License was written by Mitchell Baker when she was a lawyer for Netscape. The current version, 1.1, was written by the Mozilla Foundation and is a hybrid of BSD and GPL terms.
The new license, Mozilla Public License V.2, is expected to be out by the end of the year.