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From Rob Weir <robw...@apache.org>
Subject [DISCUSSION] (Re)use of Website Content
Date Sat, 23 Jun 2012 16:35:44 GMT
We've received a few requests from corporations and individuals
seeking to reuse portions of the www.openoffice.org website.  These
have ranged from inclusion of images into textbooks, to creating
translations of pages for a 3rd party website.  In some cases it boils
down to a trademark use question.  But in some cases it is purely a
content reuse question.

In these cases my personal stance has been to point to the appropriate
license for the content.  IMHO we (as a project) should not be giving
permission.  That is what the license is for, and we cannot/should not
add or subtract to what the license says.  Only the content owner
(copyright holder) can do that.

However, in the case of the www.openoffice.org website, the license
which pertains to individual pages is not always very clear.  The
website (and the project) has a long and complicated history, with
various contributor agreements and terms of service over time.  It is
clear that at all times (that I know of at least) content was made
available under some form of open source license or analogous
documentation license (CC or PDL).   But on a page-by-page basis this
is not always clear.

So (again, IMHO), as a project, we can best maintain the website
content, with practices like:

1) Don't remove any copyright statements

2) Preserve any license statements that are there

3) Make explicit any implicit license statements or copyrights.  For
example, if a license is indicated for
www.openoffice.org/foo/index.html, then maybe we explicitly put that
license statement on all content in /foo, if it is clear it was a
single work.

4) Be crystal clear what the license is for new incoming contributions

5) Craft license statement that is as complete and accurate as we can,
for the website.  It might have a predominant license as well as a
long list of exceptions.  Think of what we did for the AOO LICENSE and
NOTICE files.

Now, we can do all of the above and still not have absolute clarity on
all pages.  This will impact some edge cases involving re-use of
content.  For example, if someone wants to take content, modify it and
turn it into a DRM'ed E-Book, without making the source files
available, them this would be permitted by some licenses but not
permitted by others.

-Rob

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