Exceptions on licenses

Wouter Vanden Hove wouter.vanden.hove at pandora.be
Wed Oct 29 15:49:55 EST 2003

Op di 28-10-2003, om 15:37 schreef Evan Prodromou:
> >>>>> "WP" == Willem Penninckx <willem.penninckx at belgacom.net> writes:
>     WP> Hi, Just a little question:
>     WP> If a document is released under a CC license, for example a
>     WP> license which does not allow to change the content. If the
>     WP> copyright holder says someone is allowed to change the
>     WP> content, is that ok?  Or are such things not possible?
> IANAL, but my understanding is that the ultimate decision rests with
> the copyright holder. They can release documents under different
> licenses to different people.

Yes, but I wonder if the license is applicable to the specific instance
of the work, or specific to the individual who is receiving the work. Or
is this difference really irrelevant? 

"You are allowed to copy this work."
What exactly does this mean? 

1) *YOU* (and only you) are allowed to copy this work.


2) I, copyright holder, give this instance of the work a license that
permits copying, and I give this instance to you, therefore you are
allowed to copy.

The difference is when you lend that instance to someone.
Or is this a difference between a license (applies to the instance) and
a contract (applies to the individual)?

I was thinking about this difference in a context of a sampling license
for education: 
"Dear Professor, Can we use parts of your textbook in the Wikipediaunder
the FDL?"
"Yes, but only in the Wikipedia."

Now we have rebranded the cc-sa-nc as an educational license. But these
works cannot be used as raw materials for the Free Encyclopedias
Wikipedia and Planetmath, that are licensed under the GNU FDL. 

Would it be possible to have a license-(option) that uses
cc-sa-nc for a general public but allows certain people ("wikipedians")
to use it under the FDL in their Wikipedia-project and only in their
project, making derivative works of the original cc-sa-nc? That
derivative then is licensed FDL can be further used by anyone under
normal FDL-terms, but a necessary step via Wikipedia is necessary and
can be tracked via the history log.

Wouter Vanden Hove

> Of course, this is all very complicated. To your specific question, I
> believe that the answer is yes, the copyright holder can waive the
> requirement not to change content of a document for a specific
> individual and no others. Another option would be to relicense the
> document under a more liberal license that allows changes.
> ~ESP
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