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From "Geir Magnusson Jr." <ge...@apache.org>
Subject Re: [Legal] Requirements for Committers
Date Thu, 09 Jun 2005 10:23:52 GMT

On Jun 9, 2005, at 3:48 AM, Robin Garner wrote:

>> 8) Employment Limitations
>>     Are you employed as a programmer, systems analyst, or other
>>     IT professional?  If so, you may be an commiter
>>     only if your employer either:
>>     a) signs a Corporate Contribution License Agreement with Apache
>>        and lists you as a designated employee or
>>     b) submits a written authorization for your participation in this
>>        project and disclaims any copyright or confidentiality  
>> interest
>>        in your current or future contributions to this project.
> To me, this is _way_ too restructive.

It is very restrictive, and is a starting point for the discussion.

This is a real problem, I think.  I believe that people don't  
understand the restrictions they are working under, and the  
ramifications of what can happen.

> While this kind of statement
> wouldn't be a problem for me currently, from time to time I've been
> employeed by either a large company or the Australian Government,  
> neither
> of which have any legal rights to anything I do out of hours, but who
> would have conniptions if asked to sign an agreement like this.   
> Simply
> because the pointy haired bosses wouldn't understand what it was  
> about,
> and would go into knee-jerk abnegation-of-responsibility mode.


Well, what do we do?  I'm not sure we can punt here, but clearly we  
want to make it so the broadest community can participate.

> What is wrong with a personal statement confirming that no third  
> party has
> a claim on the IP of the contribution.  Seems to work for the CPL, but
> then IANAL ...

The CPL is just a license, not an organization that would be creating  
and distributing software under that license.

The scenario that I fear is someone confirming that no third party  
has a claim, in perfectly good faith.  Then, after some time goes by,  
they get involved with a big company as an employee, contractor or  
such, and as part of the paperwork, sign a document that changes that  
situation.  They may not remember their claim, and thus any work  
after that puts the project at some level of risk we didn't have before.

Worse is someone signing in bad faith or in ignorance.

We're open to any and all suggestions.


Geir Magnusson Jr                                  +1-203-665-6437

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