[cc-community] Switching from Open Content License to a Creative Commons License?
evan at wikitravel.org
Mon Jun 21 17:24:21 EDT 2004
On Mon, 2004-06-21 at 16:14, Jeremy Ray wrote:
> Hello everyone. I'm a published comic book creator
> (very small time, but published!).
Cool! Is any of your work available on the Web? (*google* *google*) Are
you the Jeremy Ray who did "Extinction Level Event", or another one?
> Before Creative Commons was launched I released my work under the Open
> Content License.
That's a good license!
> I would like to switch to
> a new license that doesn't provide for commercial
> distribution or modification of the work.
Sounds like you'd want the Creative Commons
Attribution-NoDerivs-NonCommercial 2.0 license:
I'm wondering why you'd want to change to a more restrictive license,
though. Have you had problems with the OCL?
> I don't believe I can change the licensing of the old
> work, but I think I can release new work under
> different licensing. Am I correct in believing this?
Close. You can re-license your older work under a different license, but
I believe that once you've granted people the right to use the work
under the OCL, you can't retract it. I'm not sure of that, though.
There's nothing stopping you, if you are the sole copyright holder, from
offering the same work under a different license, too. If you have
collaborators who've got some copyright stake in the work(s), you will
probably need their permission to relicense.
> One other concern I have is the additional cost of
> legal fees created by copyleft (I hope I'm using that
> term correctly) licenses. Copyleft strikes me as a
> specialist area of law that the average lawyer would
> not be able to handle. I'd like to get everyone's
> thoughts on the difficulty of finding a lawyer to
> handle copyleft disputes and the extra cost of
> copyleft over copyright. At the moment there doesn't
> seem to be a great resource for copyleft legal advice,
> even if one is willing to pay for it.
So, a couple of things: first, "copyleft" is usually only used for those
licenses that allow free distribution and modification, but forbid
creating derivative works that don't have the same license. So you can't
make a play based on a copyleft novel without the play being copyleft,
too. The GNU General Public License (GPL) is the most famous copyleft
license for software; in the Creative Commons arena, the
Attribution-ShareAlike license would probably be considered "copyleft":
There's not really a well-established term for the variety of
non-software works that have liberal redistribution and modification
licenses. Probably the leading terms are "Open Content" or "Free
Content", with "Free Culture" making a recent run for the money. Some
other ideas are "Art Libre" or "Free Art". Some (me among them) would
probably say that works with NoDerivs or NonCommercial aren't really
"free", but that's a really tough question.
Your point about lawyers is EXCELLENT. I wish there were a really good
answer to it, but as far as I know lawyers who grok Open Content are
about as rare as 5-legged pandas.
Note to Creative Commons folks: evangelizing CC to the practicing legal
community, and expanding the pool of attorneys who've heard of or feel
comfortable with the CC licenses, would be an EXCELLENT SERVICE to the
content developers who are churning out works. An even _better_
possibility would be a registry of IP attorneys in the US and overseas
who would take on clients using the CC licenses (similar to local bar
association referral services).
Lastly, this _is_ a FAQ ("I need to enforce my license; how do I do
it?") and one that doesn't have a satisfactory answer yet.
> Thanks in advance!
Thanks for your great questions! I'm really looking forward to seeing
Evan Prodromou <evan at wikitravel.org>
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