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Re: Some ideas with Emacs

From: Marcin Borkowski
Subject: Re: Some ideas with Emacs
Date: Tue, 03 Dec 2019 00:04:58 +0100
User-agent: mu4e 1.1.0; emacs 27.0.50

On 2019-12-02, at 23:41, Stefan Monnier <address@hidden> wrote:

>> I never said I want to write a "free" (as in FSF) book.
> I'm not talking about any particular book or any particular author, but
> I'm concerned here about whether I would consider a license "Free
> enough" that I'd feel comfortable recommending the book to someone.

OK.  Does that mean that you only recommend "free" books to anyone?  Do
you make a distinction between paper books and electronic books?

Just in case: I'm not attacking you, RMS or anyone else.  I'm trying to
understand your opinions (which I think I disagree with).  Quite
possibly I'm attacking some of your opinions (e.g. because I consider
them false), but this is something else.

>> I didn't say "disallowing".  I said "disallowing without an explicit
>> consent".
> That's pretty much the same, actually: a license only says what you can
> do without asking for additional permission.  It doesn't prevent the
> author from giving additional permissions upon request.

I can agree with this.

>> Have you heard the story about the infamous Swedish
>> translation of LotR?  While I would not compare any of my books (written
>> or to-be-written) with that of master JRRT, this is an important
>> cautionary tale.
> That's why I said:
>     I can agree that the author may not want to have his name directly
>     attached to the translation, but that's a far cry from disallowing
>     translations altogether.
> E.g. I could accept a license which states that any derivative work
> (translation or otherwise) needs to use a different title and/or clearly
> say not only that it's a derivative of your work but also that it is not
> your work.  Or something along these lines.

That sounds fairly reasonable to me, I guess.  Does GFDL work this way?

I'm wondering whether there is some middle ground between CC-ND and GFDL
here.  For instance, one of the ideas I have would be to release a book
under a strict license, disallowing even copying verbatim, then under
CC-ND-something after, say, 3-5 years, and then GFDL after another 3-5
years.  This looks pretty fair to me.

On the other hand, such a scheme provokes an obvious question - why not
GFDL right away?  I don't have a good answer to this, I admit.  I would
probably be afraid that I'd lost a fair portion of any financial
compensation.  A book I coauthored was released under CC-BY-NC-SA (I
would probably substitute ND for NC today), and - together with my
coauthor - we almost earned the amount of money we put into it (IOW, we
had a net loss).  That's not entirely encouraging (although to be fair,
we did not aim for profit with that book).


Marcin Borkowski

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