Choosing an Open Source License

"Choosing a license is a complex decision because of all the different issues you need to consider. Licenses can address both the rights and responsibilities of the original owner of source code, as well as those of contributing developers. Issues such as intellectual property rights, copyrights, allowances for creating derivative works, and internal use and redistribution requirements can be covered under the license, in addition to standard warranty, liability, and termination legalese. As an original owner of the source, it is helpful to have a clear idea of your own business model and long-term goals for your project, and understand the benefits and drawbacks of these licenses before you make your final decision. While the license is only part of a total product's equation, you'll need to understand how it fits into your strategy. If you are at all unsure of your choices and their implications, you should consult your lawyer. "

Read more, including a summary of available licences and useful background information in this article from java.net.