[cc-community] Public-domain-style licenses (was Re: Why "Wiki license" = CC-BY-SA?)

Mitch Featherston mlfeatherston at gmail.com
Thu Jan 17 16:50:27 EST 2008


I can certainly understand the idea of putting "free creative works" in the
same category as "public domain," but I do believe there should be a better
way to explain or phrase it. The literal, IP-based explanation of what the
public domain means is something that is NOT copyrighted. In effect, it's a
legal state. Content created and licensed under a CC license is NOT public
domain in the IP sense.

Oh, well. I hope I have made sense.

Mitch


On 1/17/08, Elizabeth Stark <estark at law.harvard.edu> wrote:
>
> Also, if anyone is interested in reading more about this, see, for
> example:
>
> http://people.ischool.berkeley.edu/~pam/papers/enriching%20discourse%20on%20public%20domains.pdf
>
>
> On Jan 17, 2008 4:20 PM, Elizabeth Stark <estark at law.harvard.edu> wrote:
>
> > Sorry to confuse things even further, but some legal scholars do
> > consider works like those under CC-BY as a part of the "public domain."
> >
> > In short, there are many different conceptions of public domain. One of
> > them, and it may be the most prominent, would be works free from copyright
> > (and patent) exclusive rights. And I agree that it's probably best to use it
> > that way in this case. But that's not the only definition.
> >
> > And to confuse yet again, under that definition, works under the CC PD
> > dedication may not technically be in the public domain, as they're
> > copyrighted works released under a particular license. They could be said,
> > though, to emulate being in the public domain.
> >
> > -E
> >
> >   On Jan 17, 2008 4:15 PM, Evan Prodromou <evan at prodromou.name> wrote:
> >
> >
> > >   On Tue, 2008-01-15 at 08:42 -0500, Greg London wrote:
> > >
> > > Public Domain style licenses like CC-BY
> > >
> > > I don't know why, but it just drives me around the bend every time you
> > > use this term.
> > >
> > > The *public domain* is a very specific legal term. Works available
> > > under the Attribution license are *not* in the public domain.
> > >
> > > I know you have good motives, Greg, but it's confusing for people when
> > > you use the term "public domain" incorrectly. I know that you mean "very
> > > liberal" or "contributing to a greater commons" or "belonging to everyone",
> > > but I think it throws people off to use a well-established term in a
> > > different way.
> > >
> > > It's like if I said, "copyleft licenses, like
> > > Attribution-NonCommercial, ..." and then insisted that by "copyleft" I mean
> > > that the author has "left" the commercial use rights out of the package.
> > > It's clever (-ish), but ultimately the confusion caused isn't worth making
> > > my idiosyncratic point.
> > >
> > > Could you explain why you use the overloaded term "public domain" for
> > > these kinds of license, rather than finding a related and less confusing
> > > one, like "public property"? "Group ownership"? "Free Cultural Work"?
> > >
> > > -Evan
> > >
> > > _______________________________________________
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> > > http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/cc-community
> > >
> > >
> >
>
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