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From Jeffrey Thompson <jt...@us.ibm.com>
Subject Re: New versions of CC licenses
Date Mon, 09 Dec 2013 14:23:25 GMT

Stephen Connolly <stephen.alan.connolly@gmail.com> wrote on 12/09/2013
08:58:47 AM:

>>                                         The single point that this
>> whole discussion started on was the difference between AL2.0 and CC-
>> BY.  Under AL2.0, B can add a restriction to its license.  Under CC-
>> BY, B can't.  In both cases rights are available directly from A,
>> and B's actions don't negate those separate rights.
> Maybe I am mis-reading CC-BY 4.0
> 2.a.5 Downstream recipients.
> B. No downstream restrictions. You may not offer or impose any
> additional or different terms or conditions on, or apply any
> Effective Technological Measures to, the Licensed Material if doing
> so restricts exercise of the Licensed Rights by any recipient of the
> Licensed Material.
> So my reading is that under CC-BY 4.0 C receives an implicit offer
> from A to the content included by B and B is not allowed to restrict
> C's ability to take up that offer.

If the language of 2.a.5.B was limited to the actual effect of B's separate
terms (as in, "any terms offered by you do not actually restrict the
recipient's rights to exercise these License Rights") then my question
wouldn't apply.  But, it says "you may not offer ... different terms ...".

Maybe a commercial distributor could get comfortable that the additional
terms don't actually restrict modification of the CC-BY material
notwithstanding the fact that the additional terms purport to do so
(possibly true, because of the grant by the original author to any
recipient), but if the commercial distributor didn't want to take that
risk, it'd need to modify its license terms.

Alternatively, the CC-BY authors could clarify this issue and add a comment
somewhere that this language doesn't actually prohibit someone from
including these additional terms in their license, it just points out that
the terms won't be effective because of the structure of the CC-BY grants.
That would be helpful.

Counsel, IBM Software Group
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