[ubuntu-us-ma] A Free (Senpaga) Software License

Doc Kinne kinnerc at gmail.com
Fri May 22 16:46:39 BST 2009


Thanks. I think.  :-)
On 22 May , 2009, at 10:19, Martin Owens wrote:
> Yes, there are licenses that are similar to free software licenses by
> with none-commercial clauses.

Just out of curiosity, can you give me a reference? I'm still not able  
to find any.

And now, as far as the software is concerned, its a curiosity concern  
now. I was able to convince the team to license the software under  
AGPL v3. Our content, so far, is licensed under CC-BY-SA-NC US 3.0.

> But it's no longer Free Software when you use them.

I can see that philosophically. By invoking a noncommercial clause we  
are taking away the freedom to "sell" the software.

> None Commercial clauses (even with Creative Commons) are very
> tricky things.

And this is where I find that most intellectual property law, in  
addition to being totally broken, is legalistic mind-wanking.  :-)

> For instance, the Ubuntu desktop training manual produced by Canonical
> is CC-BY-NC, this means that if our group was to set up classes  
> where we
> charged $20 per class (to encourage people to stick at the class) we
> would no longer be able to use the material, even if we donated or
> burned all the money.

Heck, I would argue that we CAN do this - both the MA LoCo and the  
AAVSO.  The MA LoCo can do it because we're not any sort of recognized  
group, so exactly WHO is making a profit? Who is commercially  
exploiting the work?

The AAVSO can do it because, as a non-profit we are non-commercial!

Selling a work does not necessarily equate to commercial exploitation.

Also, in the case of the Desktop Training Manual, Canonical is still  
the copyright owner of the material. They can waive any and all  
licensing restrictions for anyone they want at any time. It would not  
surprise me if they put the NA portion on that manual in order to  
believe they had that sort of control.

> Your also going to have a bastard of a time with derivative works too,
> for instance if I was to take some of your CC-BY-NC-SA work and  
> created
> something new from it, you would be unable to sell it or use it in  
> your
> business because your company is a commercial entity.

Ah, but we're not. We're a non-profit.

> Unless your absolutely sure that you need to commercially exploit this
> code

We CAN'T commercially exploit the item. We're a non-profit and it was  
financed by public money. At this point we put the NA clause on the  
content so that no one else could commercially exploit the content.

> I _highly_ recommend using a normal
> Free Software license. No good can come of software with NC clauses.

As I said, fortunately I was able to make my case with regard to the  
software to license it under AGPL 3.0, so as far as the software is  
concerned, this is just a case of curiosity now. Also in that point  
was that I wanted to use an EXISTING software license. In my mind no  
good can come from having yet another software license come into  
existence. There are too many now as it is.  :-)

Thanks, Martin!!
Richard "Doc" Kinne • Rikardo «Dokĉjo» KINNE, BA, MSc., AMAAS
<kinnerc @ gmail.com>  (sent from Ananda)
"I'm the Doctor, and you're in the biggest library in the universe.  
Look me up!"
- The Doctor
"Forests of the Dead," Doctor Who

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