The upgraded program enables participation of a wider variety of contributors and increases the flexibility of the process by which compatible implementations of Java technology are developed.
The enhancements aim to help JCP evolve into a more effective forum for serving three million Java developers.
Under the new rules, JCP participants are able to implement compatible Java specifications of their own choosing, including open source.
"This allows you to distribute reference implementations under an open-source licence or distribute commercial implementations under an open-source licence," said Onno Kluyt, director of the JCP program office at Sun Microsystems.
"Before [Version 2.5], open-source organisations did not necessarily have a guarantee that [with] any effort in the JCP they could use their open-source methodology and be compliant with the licensing requirements."
The JCP is intended as an open process for developing and revising Java technology specifications, reference implementations and technology-compatible kits.
The Java Specification Participation Agreement requires Java specifications to allow for development and distribution of compatible independent implementations; make specifications available separately; and offer Technology Compatibility Kits for free to qualified non-profit organisations, educational institutions and individuals.
The JCP 2.5 process document focuses on the implementation of the latest agreement and on the continued availability of Java APIs as part of or independent of platform specifications.
JCP members - such as Apache, BEA Systems, Motorola, and Nokia - have already signed the document.
The JCP 2.5 process document can be found at jcp.org/procedures/jcp2/index.en.jsp.