[Live-demo] Liberal licensing of Project Overviews in LiveDVD, do we want this?

Simon Cropper scropper at botanicusaustralia.com.au
Tue Jul 12 08:22:17 PDT 2011

On 12/07/11 19:05, Cameron Shorter wrote:
> Simon,
> I'm ok with a variant on your points 1, 3, and 4.
> Point 2 is likely to stump 90% of developers to the point of
> procrastination, unless we can provide a link to a table noting what
> licenses can be included in CC-By and CC-By-SA.
> Do you know of such a table?

Check out Table 2 in the referenced PDF.

It is a bit old but could be a basis for expanding on.

CC to CC Comparison are shown here...

> On 10/07/11 15:29, Simon Cropper wrote:
>> Cameron,
>> I don't think that this is too much to ask since people would need to
>> gather this information anyway to be able to 'sign' the disclaimer
>> that you outlined.
>> All I am asking is that the paper trail is transparent.
>> On 10/07/11 13:25, Simon Cropper wrote:
>>> Cameron,
>>> Maybe your suggested disclaimer could be augmented to state...
>>> 1. The Project Overviews are based on the following material which was
>>> released under the <insert name of license here> license.
>>> - specify source material
>>> 2. The <name of license> has been confirmed to be a permissive license
>>> compatible with CC-BY.
>>> - specify license type of source material
>>> - may be multiple if derivative includes material from multiple sources
>>> 3. The link to the source document is here...
>>> - so other can check
>>> 4. The link to the deed for the source document is here...
>>> - so license terms can be verified.
>>> - it also allows it to be clear what license or version of license the
>>> documentation was released under. For example MIT has a variety of
>>> varieties, as does Creative Commons. People need to verify and specify
>>> which license was used and point to the deed.
>>> After this *then* you can insert your disclaimer.
>>> On 10/07/11 12:47, Simon Cropper wrote:
>>>> Cameron,
>>>> Respondents need to do more than *just say they are happy* with Project
>>>> Overviews being CC-BY. They need to *verify that the source material
>>>> used in creation of this documentation* allows them to say they are OK.
>>>> My audit below suggests that the bulk of projects checked would not be
>>>> able to do this.
>>>> Look at the GDAL discussion over the last few days. They have clarified
>>>> the documentation is X/MIT licensed. This allows you to use the
>>>> documentation *but* the LiveDVD needs to include the disclaimer that
>>>> forms part of the licence deed at along with the documentation, so
>>>> it is
>>>> in some ways more like CC-BY-SA, not CC-BY. Looking at the
>>>> discussion on
>>>> the CC Website they equate the MIT licence to CC-BY-SA-NC.
>>>> It is a simplistic view that all that is needed is to have a project
>>>> representative say that the documentation is CC-BY without providing
>>>> evidence (paper trail) showing that this is the case.
>>>> On 10/07/11 06:54, Cameron Shorter wrote:
>>>>> Regarding results of my polling of projects about license. I sent an
>>>>> email to this list, then followed up with an email to the nominated
>>>>> project contacts for each project.
>>>>> I've had responses from all projects bar GeoMoose (a got one response
>>>>> saying they would respond later, but then seems to have forgotten).
>>>>> Almost all of the responses were along the lines of "Yes, I'm fine
>>>>> with
>>>>> CC-By for Overviews and CC-By-SA for Quickstarts".
>>>>> Simon Cropper who has written an excellent gvsig quickstart has
>>>>> noted on
>>>>> this list his preference for CC-By-SA to be used for Overviews. Simon
>>>>> also noted that we should collect people's responses publicly in order
>>>>> to ensure transparency, which is a good idea, and I'll follow through
>>>>> next asking for this confirmation.
>>>>> One person is still wanting to check the license of his source
>>>>> material
>>>>> for Overviews, and investigate some of the legal issues.
>>>>> But apart from that, everyone else was pro our license selection.
>>>>> So I'll send a following email asking people to publicly state their
>>>>> acceptance of the OSGeo-Live license policy on this live email
>>>>> list, and
>>>>> also comment on whether there is any source material which cannot be
>>>>> included in osgeo-live.
>>>>> On 06/07/11 10:03, Simon Cropper wrote:
>>>>>> On 05/07/11 20:52, Ian Turton wrote:
>>>>>>> On 30 June 2011 05:31, Johan Van de Wauw<johan.vandewauw at gmail.com>
>>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>>> On Thu, Jun 30, 2011 at 2:30 AM, Simon Cropper
>>>>>>>> <scropper at botanicusaustralia.com.au> wrote:
>>>>>>>> Project overviews are so small that even if a restrictive license
>>>>>>>> would apply, you could still get away with copying it completely as
>>>>>>>> sort of citation. We are talking about 2-3 sentences and a list of
>>>>>>>> features, which -I guess- in many cases have been at least partly
>>>>>>>> copied and/or inspired from/by other sources often not noting any
>>>>>>>> license and therefore copyrighted - so if you are so strict about
>>>>>>>> licensing I'm not even sure we can publish them ourselves.
>>>>>>> This sums up my feelings exactly - if the document we are concerned
>>>>>>> with is commercially confidential there is no way I can see any has
>>>>>>> copied my work so I can't enforce any licence anyway. So I don't
>>>>>>> really care, to be honest. The project overviews are so short and
>>>>>>> mostly derived from the project web site anyway I don't think it
>>>>>>> matters.
>>>>>>> I think the CC-BY-SA is right for the quickstarts where I have
>>>>>>> actually authored something that took me time and energy but the
>>>>>>> overview was mostly copy and paste any way so CC-BY is fine and we
>>>>>>> just have to trust people anyway since none of us is going to go to
>>>>>>> law over it if we even found out.
>>>>>> Ian,
>>>>>> Your sentiments summed up the feeling of the broader community and
>>>>>> consequently Cameron has proceeded with his proposal for CC-BY for
>>>>>> Project Overviews and CC-BY-SA for QuickStarts.
>>>>>> Everyone keeps telling me that the Project Overviews are extracted
>>>>>> from the project websites and have little or no creative content.
>>>>>> Granted most are small but how much creative content is required
>>>>>> before you move from CC-BY to CC-BY-SA? To me this is a thorny
>>>>>> question but as demonstrated by the myriad of responses to this list
>>>>>> and directly to Cameron (who was going to provide an email outlining
>>>>>> the outcome of his enquires to the project contacts), I am alone at
>>>>>> being concerned about this issue. So I'll leave this issue alone.
>>>>>> Another issue however is the blatant cut-and-paste mentality when
>>>>>> constructing project overviews. This implies that text on the project
>>>>>> website or associated documentation are appropriately licensed for
>>>>>> this to occur.
>>>>>> *I am arguing that it is not*
>>>>>> I have conducted a brief audit of the OSgeo Projects Websites. I
>>>>>> created the list of projects below from the main page of the OSGeo
>>>>>> Foundation website - http://www.osgeo.org/ so the list is just a
>>>>>> subset of what is on the Live DVD (hopefully an indicative subset).
>>>>>> I have grouped the projects based on the type of copyright...
>>>>>> Group 1. No copyright specified so local laws kick in
>>>>>> Group 2. Ambiguous or variable licensing (see notes), and
>>>>>> Group 3. Full 'all right reserved' copyright specified
>>>>>> My simple audit can be found at the bottom of this email.
>>>>>> Using information from Group 1 or Group 3 websites is not allowed
>>>>>> without approaching the copyright owners and getting permission. This
>>>>>> permission should be flagged at the start of a Project Overview
>>>>>> with a
>>>>>> disclaimer such as 'Reproduced with permission by Author 2011'.
>>>>>> The copyright for the Group 2 websites is at best ambiguous (see
>>>>>> notes). I am not sure how GNU Affero GPL and GNU Free Documentation
>>>>>> License 2002 relates to CC-BY. This would be a matter for
>>>>>> solicitors I
>>>>>> suppose. Quantum GIS and GeoNetworks however is a little clearer --
>>>>>> documentation from these sites which is released under a CC-BY-SA
>>>>>> license CAN NOT be re-released under a CC-BY license (this is
>>>>>> contrary
>>>>>> to the SA option).
>>>>>> So following my audit it is apparent that none of the source
>>>>>> documents
>>>>>> mentioned as being used to create Project Overviews can be simply be
>>>>>> cut-and-paste from the project documentation, as everyone is telling
>>>>>> me happens, without the authors of the derived documents being in
>>>>>> breach of copyright. The only time this would not be the case is when
>>>>>> the author of the Project Overview is the author of the original
>>>>>> source document. In projects where hundreds are involved in creation
>>>>>> of documentation this would be highly unlikely.
>>>>>> --- My simple audit ---
>>>>>> Group 1. Websites with no copyright notices (i.e. they do not state
>>>>>> they are in public domain, CC0, CC-BY or CC-BY-SA). In most
>>>>>> jurisdictions, the author is automatically covered by a 'copyright -
>>>>>> all rights reserved' option.
>>>>>> - deegree / homepage and wiki
>>>>>> - MapBuilder
>>>>>> - MapGuide Open Source
>>>>>> - OpenLayers
>>>>>> - gvSIG
>>>>>> - FDO
>>>>>> - GDAL/OGR
>>>>>> - GEOS
>>>>>> - MetaCRS
>>>>>> - PostGIS
>>>>>> Group 2. Ambiguous or variable licensing
>>>>>> - geomajas - GNU Affero GPL is specified at the footer of
>>>>>> the website. It is unclear if this 'software' licence
>>>>>> relates to the software or the text on the page as this
>>>>>> licence is usually applied to the former not the latter.
>>>>>> - Mapblender - Website has no licence specified. The PDF manual is
>>>>>> GNU Free Documentation License 2002.
>>>>>> - GRASS GIS - Home page 'copyright - all rights reserved' license
>>>>>> but wiki GNU Free Documentation License 2002.
>>>>>> - Quantum GIS - Home page 'copyright - all rights reserved' license
>>>>>> but wiki CC-BY-SA.
>>>>>> - GeoNetworks - Home page 'copyright - all rights reserved'
>>>>>> license but
>>>>>> documentation released under CC-BY-SA
>>>>>> Group 3. 'copyright - all rights reserved' license specified
>>>>>> - Geoserver
>>>>>> - Mapfish
>>>>>> - MapServer
>>>>>> - GeoTools
>>>>>> - OSSIM - Home page, PDF documents and Wiki all under 'copyright -
>>>>>> all rights reserved' license

Cheers Simon

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

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