[cc-licenses] Parallel Distribution and Non-Copyleft Licenses
james at grimmelmann.net
Sun Dec 3 18:37:33 EST 2006
Greg London wrote:
>>>> I think that this may be an essential point of our disagreement.
>>>> You are most concerned that everyone have identical freedoms in
>>>> a ShareAlike work.
>>> Yes. And why do you think that it is important?
>>> Hint: it isn't because I want to use cc licenses as a "weapon".
>>> Why would I think it is important?
>>> Hint: it isn't "just because" either.
>>> Get this question right and maybe this conversation will
>>> make some progress.
>> (skipping this question because it is rhetorical)
> No. It wasn't. You have yet to grasp why I support
> an anti-DRM clause and oppose a parallel-distribution clause.
> Or at the very least, I haven't heard it said back to
> me properly yet.
Since this is important to you, I'll try again.
Here is a scenario that you are concerned about.
DRM Dave could create a platform that is DRM-only. Anyone who wishes to
place content onto the platform would need permission from Dave. Once
content is on the platform, it is impossible for anyone who receives the
content to exercise one of the freedoms guaranteed by the CC license.
(Two very important examples are redistributing it to others and making
derivative works at all.)
First, assume that the current U.S. 3.0 license proposals are in place:
DRM Dave may place a CC-licensed work onto the platform. He is the only
one who is able to do so (because anyone else would need his
permission). Because of the anti-DRM clause, DRM Dave may not
distribute the work to anyone else using the platform, because the DRM
would "restrict the ability of a recipient . . . to exercise the right
granted to them under the License." Thus, no one may distribute
CC-licensed works on the platform.
In contrast, assume that the current U.S. 3.0 license proposals are in
place, with the addition of CC's proposed parallel distribution clause:
Here, DRM Dave is still the only one who can place any CC-licensed works
onto the platform. And again, no one besides DRM Dave can distribute
any CC-licensed works using the platform (because they don't have the
ability to place the works on in the first place). Dave, however, can
distribute a CC-licensed work on the platform by making available an
accessible unrestricted version in parallel.
If Alice takes that work and makes a derivative work from it, she will
be unable to place that derivative work on the platform. Bob, however,
who has paid DRM Dave's licensing fee, will be able to. (And in the
case of a CC-SA work, Bob must also make an unrestricted accessible
version of the derivative available in parallel.)
If DRM Dave's platform enjoys wide exposure, it will be a popular
platform for distributing works in the shared community of CC-licensed
works. Every time a new copy or derivative is loaded on, DRM Dave will
collect his tax. Others will be technically able to use their freedoms
to make derivative works, but without access to DRM Dave's platform,
they won't have the same practical ability to share their changes with
others. Only those changes blessed by Dave can be shared and seen and
go on to be drawn upon themselves, and so on. The result is that DRM
Dave has successfully taxed the community, and has the ability to censor
those in the community by denying them access to the platform. This
kind of control is antithetical to the values that CC is trying to and
should encourage with its licenses.
Does this statement of the problem meet your standards?
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