[cc-licenses] Version 3.0 - Public Discussion

Evan Prodromou evan at prodromou.name
Fri Aug 11 10:51:33 EDT 2006


On Fri, 2006-11-08 at 10:08 +0100, rob at robmyers.org wrote:
> Quoting Greg London <teloscorbin at gmail.com>:
> 
> > But Creative Commons doesn't require source code,
> > or has that changed?
> 
> It has not. The closest you get to source is the original version. And if the
> original version is only available on a DRM-laden system you cannot move it to
> other system.

Except in a parallel distribution system, the original version is
available in BOTH a DRM-laden version and a non-DRM'd version. That's
the whole point -- giving programmers freedom while ensuring the rights
of downstream users.

> This is why pleas for DRM are *not* pleas for user freedom.

Yes, they are. We're just asking that creators have the right to port
works to the platforms and formats that they choose, while ensuring the
rights of downstream users to copy, modify, and distribute.

Let's take another simple example:

        Alice records a spoken-word piece and releases the work as
        by-sa-2.5. Bob mixes Alice's recording with a beat and a guitar
        background and makes the resulting song available as an MP3 and
        an Ogg Vorbis file, also licensed under by-sa-2.5. Charlie has
        an iSuck music player that only plays iSuck DRM-mandatory files.
        Charlie asks Bob to make an iSuck version available, but Bob
        can't because of the anti-DRM provisions in the 2.5 licenses. So
        Charlie can't listen to the song.
        
And a counter example:

        Alice records a spoken-word piece and releases the work as
        by-sa-X, which allows parallel distribution. Bob mixes Alice's
        recording with a beat and a guitar background and makes the
        resulting song available as an MP3 and an Ogg Vorbis file, also
        licensed under by-sa-X. Charlie has an iSuck music player that
        only plays iSuck DRM-mandatory files. Charlie asks Bob to make
        an iSuck version available, and Bob does it. He already has
        unencumbered versions available, so under the principle of
        parallel distribution it's OK to make an encumbered version,
        too.
        
        Charlie is a filmmaker, and he likes Alice and Bob's song so
        much that he wants to put it in the score of his next movie. His
        video program can't import the iSuck format (and it may be
        illegal to do so in some jurisdictions), but he downloads the
        Ogg Vorbis version that Bob made available in parallel, and he
        uses that version instead.

In the second scenario, Charlie and Bob can do more things (distribute a
work in whatever format, listen to the work on their chosen piece of
hardware) than they could in the first scenario. Being allowed to do
more things is good. These freedoms are additive -- Charlie playing the
iSuck-format song on his iSuck player doesn't make it more or less
difficult for Diana to play the Ogg version on her Linux desktop.

Now, if you're going to be absolutist about it, people like Charlie
don't DESERVE freedom, because they bought the wrong music player.
People like Bob don't DESERVE to share with others, because they'd even
consider distributing music in a DRM'd format. These are BAD PEOPLE and
they don't deserve rights. Shame on them for even asking!

> Shhhh! The point is that not allowing DRM restricts people's freedom, because
> any ban on restricting freedom is obviously a restriction on freedom, and we
> cannot have restrictions on freedom. Everybody knows that! ;-)

Blah blah blah. Maybe you need to step back a bit and think about what
the proposed change says.

Parallel distribution doesn't restrict freedom. It gives *at least* the
same freedoms as distributing in an unencumbered format, *plus* the
freedom to run on a DRM-only platform. That's more freedom, not less.

~Evan




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