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From Luis Villa <l...@lu.is>
Subject Re: Is GitHub forking subject to clause 4b?
Date Wed, 04 Jan 2017 00:59:38 GMT
On Mon, Jan 2, 2017 at 6:07 PM Roy T. Fielding <fielding@gbiv.com> wrote:

> No, no, no, no, ...
>
> -1
>
> First, this public discussion list is not where we decide to make changes
> to our legal FAQ.  We have an internal list for that, managed by our VP,
> and checked by our lawyers.
>

Apologies for suggesting a FAQ change without mentioning what I thought was
obvious, which is that neither I nor this list have the ability to update
the FAQ.

We don't define what a prominent notice "is", exactly, because it will
> depend on the nature of the change.


Good to know that was the original intent - I'm generally in favor of
making license requirements reasonable within the context of the changes
being made, and this seems like a good move in that direction.

That said, it is not obvious how one derives this intent from the text of
the license, since neither the license, nor the dictionary definition of
"prominent", ties the required amount of prominence to the nature of the
thing the reader is being notified of.

So, if that's the ASF's intent, it might be a good point to clarify in a
FAQ.


> It can even be accomplished external to the file itself
>

As above, I'm glad to know that's the intent, and I agree with the
reasoning.

However, as Jim pointed out, that's not obvious from the text of the
license, which could have said that the broader Contribution or modified
Work, rather than the specific modified file, must "carry" the notice. So
again I respectfully suggest that if this is the intent of the ASF, it be
clarified in the FAQ.


> every single term within it that appears to be ambiguous (or broadly
> undefined) is intended to be so.
>

No legal document ever written contains only intended ambiguity.* Part of
what makes open legal work fruitful (and fun!) is the tradition of writing
commentaries to help clarify ambiguities as we become aware of them.

HTH-
Luis

* My favorite treatise on contract drafting contains multiple entire
chapters just on specific sub-types of ambiguities, and the author's blog
contains 2-3 dozen posts more about ambiguities and court cases stemming
from them.

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