Re: sound, images, GPL and other licenses

On Thu, 21 Dec 2006, Thilo Pfennig wrote:

> Date: Thu, 21 Dec 2006 14:08:13 +0100
> From: Thilo Pfennig <email pfennigsolutions de>
> To: games-list gnome org
> Subject: Re: sound, images, GPL and other licenses
> Alan Horkan schrieb:
> > I'm reasonably sure I used XMP to mark my SVG as being in the Public
> > Domain and part of and generally speaking I'm a big fan of
> > seeing my work widely reused.  Sometimes I just prefer if people ask
> > first* and then after that make sure things are correctly labelled.
> >
> Hi Alan,
> Just for the records - as far as I have understood copyrights:
>  * If a work is licensed under BSD or Public Domain you can relicense it
> to any other license or make it proprietary, because BSD is not copyleft
> and public domain has no restriction at all.

Yes you can do whatever you like.

It is definately rude to relicense peoples work without a good reason, but
it is not prohibited.

>  * If a work is licensed under CC-BY-2.5 (Creative Commons) you can also
> relicense it to whatever you like (very much BSD like)

I'm not sure how strong the attribution and copyright notice requirement
of the BSD license is and to avoid any confusion over the old obnoxious
advertising clause I tend to talk about the even more permissive MIT
license, which only really requires the copyright notice remain intact.
(The old advertising clause in BSD complicates matters.)

>  * If a work is licensed under GPL it only may be redistributed under
> the conditions of  the GPL [copyleft].

GPL allows GPL or copyright.  I mention this because the GPL only really
applies if you are making modifications, since you are allowed to
pass on unmodified binaries and defer the responsiblity of providing
the sources to the original supplier (up to a point).

>  * If a work is licensed under CC-SA-BY-2.5 (Creative Commons)  it only
> may be redistributed under the conditions of  the CC-BY-SA-2.5 [copyleft].

> Wouldn't it make sense if all media files of gnome-games would ALSO be
> available under one common license or public domain?

I wouldnt frame the discussion in terms of making sense.  It would make
things more convenient and easier for anyone wanting to reuse the graphics
but I wouldn't want to imply that it was in any way unreasonable if some
artists were unwilling to do that.

GPL is already the absolute bare minimum requirement, and maybe LGPL
should be the bare minimum for any artwork.  Public Domain is simple
enough to keep track of (and is technically the abscence of any license)
but how many other licenses would you really want to keep track of?

If a really talented artist was unwilling to provide anything more than
GPL/LGPL license to their work would that be a bad thing?  I get your
point is that to an outsider that is how it seems at the moment when in
fact several artists are willing to allow much greater reuse than that.

> This would enable people to distribute all files under under the same
> conditions (make sharing more easy). Or do you all think it is ok if
> every author chooses the condition he/she likes best?

Two maybe three licenses would probably be a good idea.  I certainly
wouldnt want to force a maintainer to try to keep track of the full
spectrum of Creative Commons license.

> Does it make sense to have a policy for contributing media data? The
> problem with asking first is that if an author is not available things
> can get complicated.

As I said we already have GPL as the bare minimum and others have chosen
BSD and Public Domain so it is more a case of formalising and making the
existing arrangement clear.


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