[cc-community] Question about Share Alike

Robert Atwood lists at atwood.org.uk
Mon Sep 1 06:33:36 EDT 2008

Terry Hancock wrote:

 > Okay, here's one:
 > I was writing up a piece about images of artificial intelligence and
 > artificial life in fiction, and I wanted to create several illustrations
 > to go along with it. Due to the format of the publication, it was
 > awkward to use lots of separate illustrations, and a smaller number of
 > composed images made more sense.
 > Most of the images were free-licensed (as my article text was going to
 > be). However, I was making pop culture references, and it was obvious
 > that it was appropriate to include some screencaps of SF shows featuring
 > AI/AL characters. These were, of course, according to the same sort of
 > fair use rationale that Wikipedia uses (low res, quoted for review
 > purposes, etc).
 > I went so far as to compose an illustration which consisted of a set of
 > screenshots, and some other elements into a background shot of an image
 > which was essentially of "Gepetto's workshop" from "Pinocchio" (not the
 > Disney version, just a composed photo of wooden puppets in a workshop).
 > Then I realized that the workshop shot was a By-SA image. Ack! The
 > composition was, of course, a license-violation, because I didn't have
 > rights to the screencaps I was using, and obviously couldn't license
 > them By-SA.

Turning the ideas around a bit,  it seems like the problem may be 
considered to arise from the need, or decision,  to  use 'ARR' material 
(the screen captures) -- rather that the use of 'SA' material (the 
workshop shot).  You understood you could not license the composition as 
'SA' because of the screen caps, perhaps that is exactly what the 
copyright holders of the screen captures desire.

In other words, it seems that this particular case is not arising from a 
difficulty of combining various 'free' material, but from attempting to 
combine 'non-free' non-'copyleft' material with 'free' and 'copyleft' 
material.  It seems like this would always be a problem.

Furthermore, is there already any clear decision as to whether a fair 
use item may or may not be included in a BY-SA type of work?

Rob Myers wrote:

 > Just tell them your opinion. If they go against it you can be the test
 > case. ;-)

  My non-legal opinion is that so long as it is clear what the source is 
and that it satisfies existing criteria for fair use,  the creator of 
the derivative work has just as much right to make 'fair use' of the 
items as you did (modulo jurisdiction :-) ) so perhaps there is no 
problem. Apart from not wishing to wind up being the 'test case' as if 
it's never been tested before!

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