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

Simon Cropper scropper at botanicusaustralia.com.au
Tue Jul 12 19:09:32 PDT 2011

On 13/07/11 11:31, Cameron Shorter wrote:
> On 13/07/11 03:22, Simon Cropper wrote:
>> 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.
>> http://www.iis.sinica.edu.tw/~trc/public/publications/jise06/
>> It is a bit old but could be a basis for expanding on.
>> CC to CC Comparison are shown here...
>> http://wiki.creativecommons.org/FAQ#If_I_use_a_Creative_Commons-licensed_work_to_create_a_new_work_.28ie_a_derivative_work_or_adaptation.29.2C_which_Creative_Commons_license_can_I_use_for_my_new_work.3F
> Simon, I'm not clear how to interpret your first PDF reference above. If
> I understand correctly, all the Open Source Software licenses, and
> public domain documents, can be incorporated into a CC-By and CC-By-SA
> licensed documents. GPL, LGPL, MPL can be included into CC-By-SA documents.
> Is that your interpretation?
> If that interpretation is correct, then I expect that the majority of
> our Project Overview source documentation, if not all of it, would be
> fine to be included into Project Overviews.


Unfortunately this table is a bit deceptive. Initially I took it as a 
compatibility matrix but this is not the case. The authors are merely 
stating the various attributes of CC licenses are good indicators of 
openness and have ranked the FOSS licenses accordingly. All we can say 
from this table is that most FOSS licenses require attribution, not that 
they are compatible with CC-BY license (that would be too easy). Sorry 
but this PDF was probably a red hearing.

I have conducted extensive searches for alternative resources but have 
found nothing that would help. Essentially projects need to review the 
license requirement of their content and see if it is compatible.

The problem is that a lot of projects have either not specified anything 
for their documentation (so it falls back to 'all right reserved') or 
their documentation appears to be, in-part, caught up in the software 
license (e.g. GPL or MIT; although this appears only to apply when the 
content is distributed with the software).

I have posted a thread on the Creative Commons mail list to see if 
anyone is aware of such a compatibility matrix for open content 
licenses. I will post back if I get some extra detail.

In the interim if people are able to specify the license that the 
original work was released, we can make an educated guess based on the 
deed whether there would be an issue. I am unable to do this for you or 
for myself because most people have neglected to specify where they 
obtained the material. The preliminary review of the websites and 
primary documentation sources that were originally suggested as being 
the primary source material for project overviews, identified more 
problems than helped.

I presume that in this sector there would only be a small number of open 
content licences to compare, so we should reach a watershed pretty 
quickly and once a project identifies the license of the source material 
you would be able to check against our draft compatibility matrix.

So in short...
1. get projects to identify document sources and the license, if any, 
that they were released under; and
2. We/I can look at the deeds to the licenses to see if derivatives can 
be created from this work AND they can be re-licensed as CC-BY.
3. We/I can create a matrix similar to that used in the  CC to CC 
Comparison table referenced above.

Cheers Simon

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

More information about the Osgeolive mailing list