[cc-community] Strengthening the CC-BY-SA copyleft with respect to code

Bart Kelsey elbarto at gmail.com
Tue Dec 20 15:19:46 EST 2011

I addressed that exact point in a previous paragraph, although perhaps I
wasn't clear enough.  Here's what I said about that:

Now, what about something like a generic 3d model viewer?  Wouldn't this
sort of change prevent a program like that from being distributed with
CC-BY-SA licensed models?  The answer to this is that if the program you're
distributing is a 3d model viewer, then that program itself is the work,
whereas if you distribute a game that uses a 3D model, the entire *game*
(including the assets therein) are the work.

There's a clear distinction there between a generic application meant for
viewing any content, and a game where the content is part of the work.  I'd
appreciate it if we could actually spend time *really* examining this,
because it gets dismissed out of hand far, far too often (and this is the
exact argument used).  I don't see where this argument holds water,
honestly.  You can always come up with weird edge cases for a specific
license, but in general it's very clear whether a piece of art is part of a
game, or whether it's just something that's included with a viewer.


On Tue, Dec 20, 2011 at 2:50 PM, Alan Cox <alan at lxorguk.ukuu.org.uk> wrote:

> > At any rate, right now if an artist wants to create art for use only in
> > open source software (or at the very least, software with a sharealike
> > license), they have no viable licensing options.  This is particularly
> > frustrating since those protections *are* available to people who write
> > code.
> Actually not, and for good reason.
> The question you are heading for I think is the question of when is
> something a single dervied work or not.
> In the software case I can't use copyright law to write an editor
> and forbid you from writing proprietary software with it. In the
> artwork case you can't stop me loading your NC photo into a non-free paid
> for app.
> There are cases its annoying, there are cases where the boundary in law
> may well be dubious, and certainly the boundary in question is at best a
> fog not a line. There are however lots of cases where such degree of
> control would be objectionable to society. Imagine if Windows could
> forbid viewing CC content !
> I would personally be very surprised if a game that was no use without
> that artwork was in fact multiple independent works but I am not a lawyer
> and this area is definitely a lawyers minefield.
> Also if the issue is the boundary of copyright and what is a work then a
> copyright licence cannot I think fix the problem.
> Alan

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