[cc-licenses] BY-NC-SA (International) 3.0 Draft 1 Comments

rob at robmyers.org rob at robmyers.org
Mon Aug 14 08:32:25 EDT 2006

Quoting Luis Villa <luis at tieguy.org>:

> On 8/14/06, Peter Brink <peter.brink at brinkdata.se> wrote:
>> Rob Myers skrev:
>> >
>> > For me personally the problem with "adaptation" is that it I'm used
>> > to a use of the word that is more limited than "derivative". So
>> > "adaptation" would just mean a television or film version of a book.
>> > And in fact the dictionary that I am looking at uses this definition.
>> > It does not mean a sample of a piece of music used to make another
>> > piece of music, for example.
>> >
>> If we take Sweden as an example, we will find that the Swedish
>> translation of "derivative" ("härlett") is a term that does not exist in
>> the Swedish copyright law. The term "adaptation" ("bearbetning") is the
>> term used in the legislation, in the legal literature, in case law etc.
>> So the term "adaptation", in an international perspective, tend to point
>> people in the right direction - at least as far as their national
>> legislation goes.
> Part of the GPL's reasoning in getting rid of derivative was actually
> to get rid of all the legal baggage around derivative, and use
> something that they could define themselves. If 'adaptation' is a term
> of art in European countries, perhaps it is best to avoid that as
> well.

My understanding is that the reasoning behind GPL3 and CC 3 is slightly

* GPL 3 is being made as independent as possible of any jurisdiction.

* CC 3 International is being written to use the language of the Berne 
convention. The license states this explicitly

Berne uses both "derivative" and "adaptation". The latter is a sub-type of the
former. Given that Swedish law doesn't use the term "derivative" (and I don't
think UK law does either) I agree that it might be problematic to use this
word. And as I have previously mentioned I am also not sure that "adaptation"
is without problems, although it could be clarified by the license.

So yes, this may be a case where rather than using a word from Berne 
that may be
problematic a GPL-3-style generic phrase should be used. Something like "a new
work incorporating or transforming some or all of the licensed work" or "any
use of the work that would cause a new copyrighted work to be produced 
(such as
sampling, translation or adaptation)". But this may look strange if the 
rest of
the license is written in Berne-ese.

- Rob.

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