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From "Dennis E. Hamilton" <dennis.hamil...@acm.org>
Subject RE: code without an iCLA ...
Date Fri, 26 Aug 2011 18:33:10 GMT
Another way of describing non-trivial is as sufficient material that would be a basis for a
claim of infringement that a court would not consider too trivial to consider. 

Small patches are considered to be sufficiently trifling (whatever cleverness it takes to
come up with them) that there is nothing useful in claiming copyright in them (absent a notice
to the contrary of course). 
[Now I'm waiting for the casting call to play a demented judge in a Law & Order episode.]

How cautious a [P]PMC is about accepting something that appears to be non-trivial or that
has cloudy provenance is going to depend on just how vigilant a [P]PMC is willing to be. 
There are a range of responses to individual cases, and most of them are likely to fall in
fair territory.

 - Dennis

PS: There is also the case that not everything is copyrightable subject matter, and that may
pertain to trivial (relative to copyright) patches, but one doesn't want to end up in court
to determine the facts of the matter.  The clear-cut cases are easy though.  It is the intermediate
ones that lead to varied responses.  It is a bit like deciding what to do with a program whose
code is neither terrible nor extraordinary but some degree of iffy.  Hypotheticals don't work
for those cases.

-----Original Message-----
From: sa3ruby@gmail.com [mailto:sa3ruby@gmail.com] On Behalf Of Sam Ruby
Sent: Friday, August 26, 2011 09:33
To: legal-discuss@apache.org; michael.meeks@novell.com
Subject: Re: code without an iCLA ...

On Fri, Aug 26, 2011 at 6:13 AM, Michael Meeks <michael.meeks@novell.com> wrote:
> Hi guys,
>        I've been trying to understand this for a while, and am (of course)
> rather new to the Apache Way of doing things, so please bear with my
> ignorance:
> ..
> IMHO 2000 lines of code is borderline for a submission without an
> ICLA. Best to discuss on your project mail list and have the project
> decide.
> [/snip]
>        I had -thought- that an iCLA would be required for everything
> non-trivial since the AL2 has no plus, or future version language, nor a
> license steward. That (it seems to me) necessitates owning[2] the rights
> to the entire codebase to allow future re-licensing to AL3 etc.

ICLAs are required for everything that is non-trivial.  Calling 2K
lines "borderline" was being polite and non-confrontational; treat it
as an understatement.

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