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Re: Overview of copyright issues

From: Travis Briggs
Subject: Re: Overview of copyright issues
Date: Thu, 10 Sep 2009 09:26:09 -0400

Anyways, as a contributor (!), I definitely support "or later" because
it allows for things like the Wikipedia re-licensing. It would have
been quite a mess if Wikipedia wasn't under an "or later" clause.

I'll volunteer to add GPLv2 text to the top of all the files. Just let
me know when you want it done.

 I'd also be willing to volunteer for the pester-contributors-to-allow
-for-the-'or later'-clause-committee.
As far as I understand, copyright law is awful and there are no
allowances or time limits for making 'reasonable attempts' at
contacting copyright holders. So until permission is secured from
every contributor, the move to 'or later' cannot be made. Similarly,
if even one contributor withholds permission, then the conversion
could not succeed without discarding/re-writing those contributions.

As far as the GFDL is concerned, I'm in agreement with Debian. It's
a problematic's less ambiguous to just license the docs
under the same license as the code (or a less restrictive one...).


On Thu, Sep 10, 2009 at 9:16 AM, Hans Aberg <address@hidden> wrote:
> On 10 Sep 2009, at 14:46, Joseph Wakeling wrote:
>>> In GNU projects, the normal thing is that contributors sign a paper
>>> which is sent in to GNU that they donate the code to GNU.
>> Nope.
>>  "For a program to be GNU software does not require transferring
>>  copyright to the FSF; that is a separate question. If you transfer
>>  the copyright to the FSF, the FSF will enforce the GPL for the
>>  program if someone violates it; if you keep the copyright,
>>  enforcement will be up to you."
>> from:
> You do not have to have to sign it over to FSF, obviously, since nobody can
> force you to give away what you own.
> But that is how it is done on projects like Bison. Whenever new contributors
> show up, they are asked to sign a paper and send it in to FSF.
>  Hans
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