Meta’s newly released large language model Lama-2 is not open source


Earlier this week, Meta announced Integrated with Microsoft launch Llama 2, an “open source” large-scale language model (LLM) that uses artificial intelligence to generate text, images, and code. Longtime ZDNet contributor and tech analyst Steven J. Vaughn Nichols commented to The Register:Meta is simply an open but ultimately proprietary LLM.From the report: According to Amanda Brooke, CEO of Open UK, he said.“Not an OSI-endorsed license, but a significant release of Open Technology … It’s a step toward democratizing technology to move AI from the hands of the few to the many, and increasing trust in its use and future.” And for many developers, this may be enough. […] But the devil is in the details when it comes to open source. And there, Meta, along with the Llama 2 Community License Agreement, fell flat on its face. As the record says Earlierof Community agreement It prohibits using Llama 2 to train other language models; And if the technology is used in an app or service with more than 700 million monthly users, a special license from Meta is required. OSI Executive Director Stefano Maffuli commented: “While I’m happy that META is advancing access to powerful AI systems, I’m concerned that some who respect LLaMa 2 as open source may be confused. If it were, there would be no restrictions on commercial use (points 5 and 6 of open source mean that it has some commercial terms).

Maffuli went deep. “Open source means that developers and users can decide how and where to use the technology without having to join another party. They have sovereign power over the technology they use. When it reads “If you’re Amazon, Google, Microsoft, ByteDance, Alibaba, or a big startup, you can’t use this.” It might sound like a reasonable phrase, but it’s implicitly saying, ‘You have to ask us for permission to create a tool that solves world hunger,’ or something big like that.” Licensing expert and founder of RedMonk Stephen O’Grady explains:Unless you work at Facebook, think Linux was open source” Exactly. Maffuli concluded: “That’s why open source doesn’t set limits on the field of use: you can’t predict what will happen in the future, good or bad.”

OSI isn’t the only open-source-savvy group considering a Lama 2 license. Karen Sadler, a legal expert and executive director of the Software Freedom Conservancy, dug into the language of the license and said, “The additional commercial terms included in Section 2 of the license agreement that limit the number of users make it non-free and non-open source.” To Sadler, “Meta seems to be trying to push a license with some open source license trappings, but it’s having the opposite effect. Also, the acceptable use policy that the license requires compliance with is very broadly written and very realistically enforceable. If you send a mass email, could it be considered spam? Last, but not least, she noted, “There’s no public drafting or comment process for this license, which would lead to introducing a new license anyway. A serious effort is necessary.

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