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Questions of ownership can block widespread software reuse. Forced to choose between negotiating rights to an existing component and reimplementing it, developers often take the latter option. At least in part, this is because they have less control when negotiating with an unknown party, and such negotiations can be expensive - in time, legal fees, knowledge, and the bookkeeping required to monitor usage. How can we dramatically reduce these costs? A digital license protects an author or owner's intellectual property rights to regulate how content is sold or used, monitors compliance to terms and conditions, and regulates compensation. The goal of digital license automation is to provide an infrastructure that makes it easy for programs to negotiate with each other when they need services, taking the human at least partly out of the loop. A pervasive, low-overhead digital licensing infrastructure could enlarge the component software marketplace and lead to greater availability of reusable software components.