[OSGeo-Discuss] LiveDVD Copyright Ambiguity

Simon Cropper scropper at botanicusaustralia.com.au
Wed Mar 16 18:27:43 PDT 2011

Hi All,

I would like ask the question about copyright associated with the Live 
DVD produced by LisaSoft and OSGeo.

I have been looking over the website and note that the copyright is 
attributed to LisaSoft and/or OSGeo.

If you work you way down to the html versions of the quickstart guides 
they are also copyrighted to OSGeo. If you work your way back to the RST 
source files for these pages you can see that the authors released their 
work under a 'Creative Commons' license.

Take the MapGuide as an example...



Shouldn't the website be 'Creative Commons', or at least the quickstart 
section? At least this is my understanding of the use of CC works.

Also, I note that most authors of rst files simple inserted 'Creative 
Commons' under the license section. If you go to the CC site there is no 
license specifically called "Creative Commons'.


The license relevant to this work should be unambiguous and works should 
point to the specific deed relevant to the license that they are 
releasing the work under. 'Creative Commons' is not specific enough.

I know this is a old topic that has been debated before but I would have 
thought that these issues would have been clarified by now - especially 
as the DVD is in its 4th rebirth.

For debate, I have included the following clause extracted from the FAQ 
webpage on the Creative Commons Site


Note I have inserted ### comments ### throughout...

You will notice that none of the ways proposed here to 'properly 
attribute a Creative Commons licensed work' have been met.

As a group OSGeo should be aspiring to ensure any new works *at least* 
have unambiguous licensing both for the original works and the Live DVD.

*** start quote ***

How do I properly attribute a Creative Commons licensed work?

All current CC licenses require that you attribute the original 
author(s) ### not done in final product ###. If the copyright holder has 
not specified any particular way to attribute them, this does not mean 
that you do not have to give attribution. It simply means that you will 
have to give attribution to the best of your ability with the 
information you do have. Generally speaking, this implies five things:

     * If the work itself contains any copyright notices placed there by 
the copyright holder, you must leave those notices intact, or reproduce 
them in a way that is reasonable to the medium in which you are 
re-publishing the work ### authorship and license placed in RST files 
not maintained in HTML ###

     * Cite the author's name, screen name, user identification, etc. If 
you are publishing on the Internet, it is nice to link that name to the 
person's profile page, if such a page exists ### not done ###

     * Cite the work's title or name, if such a thing exists. If you are 
publishing on the Internet, it is nice to link the name or title 
directly to the original work ### not done, list of contributors not 
linked back to contributions, also contributors section hidden under 
sponsorships page ###

     * Cite the specific CC license the work is under. If you are 
publishing on the Internet, it is nice if the license citation links to 
the license on the CC website. ### not done, in fact I could not find 
any mention of CC on the LiveDVD webpage ###

     * If you are making a derivative work or adaptation, in addition to 
the above, you need to identify that your work is a derivative work 
i.e., “This is a Finnish translation of the [original work] by 
[author].” or “Screenplay based on [original work] by [author].”
### not done ###

In the case where a copyright holder does choose to specify the manner 
of attribution, in addition to the requirement of leaving intact 
existing copyright notices, they are only able to require certain 
things. Namely:

     * They may require that you attribute the work to a certain name, 
pseudonym or even an organization of some sort. ### not done ###

     * They may require you to associate/provide a certain URL (web 
address) for the work. ### not done ###

If you are interested to see what an actual license ("legalcode") has to 
say about attribution, you can use the CC Attribution 3.0 Unported 
license as an example. Please note that this is only an example, and you 
should always read the appropriate section of the specific license in 
question ... usually, but perhaps not always, section 4(b) or 4(c):


*** end quote ***

Cheers Simon

    Simon Cropper
    Principal Consultant
    Botanicus Australia Pty Ltd
    PO Box 160, Sunshine, VIC
    W: www.botanicusaustralia.com.au

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