[cc-licenses] New Generic and ports

Jonathon Blake jonathon.blake at gmail.com
Tue Oct 10 02:39:01 EDT 2006

Drew wrote:

>> The issue with the By-SA licence in this situation, is that the
>> organization is literally cutting off their oxygen supply.  If they
> That is far from proven. Perhaps they need a bit more faith?

Because of a faulty copyright filing Charles Sheldon's _In His Steps_
entered the public domain as soon as it was published.  As a result he
received nothing in the way of royalties, or payments in lieu of
royalties.  Every Christian organization since then has pondered upon
that experience when deciding upon its licensing and royalties policy.

I'll grant that software is not the same as published material, but
the example here is e-Sword, which is free (as in beer) has had more
downloads, than copies of Libronix, QuickVerse, BibleWorks, and
WordSearch combined have been sold, all of which are commercial
programs.  The revenue that e-Sword has generated since it was created
is less than the revenue any of those companies earn in a year.  As an
aside, I'll point out that Libronix originally was shareware, but that
revenue model didn't generate the income needed for their royalty

> And how may are  going to take their brothers to court over the matter of copyright violation?

One organization has a policy of using your local process server as
your first notification of a possible copyright violation. Several
others are well known for their enforcement of alleged copyright
infringement. [Whilst they might not sue because you quoted 101
verses, rather than 100 verses in your sermon, they will send you a
warning letter if they find out about it. Repeat offenders will be

>> The CC-NC licence _appears_ to fit  that bill.
> Yes, it does. (Except for the NC confusion issue.)

Ideally, the NC licence would contain a clause that defines the terms
"commercial" and "non-commercial".

>> I think people are treating it as "Better Copyright Options",
> Yes, they do, but it still does not make for a creative commons.

True, especially when somebody distributes a play under an NC licence.
[One has to wonder what the playwright was thinking, by using an NC licence.]

> So far I haven't heard a peep from anyone. (Unless I missed it or promptly

Something like that will evolve when people figure out what a creative
commons for _text_ means. The best current example is Wikipedia, and
its relatives.

Rob wrote:

>It also works against you making money from end users of your
own work, as you have already released your own work for free.

The theory is that the hard copy can be released under "All Rights
reserved", and the e-text under an NC licence of one flavour or
another.  This is based upon the experience of commercial publishers
--- releasing some content in e-text format increases sales of the
hard copy.

>With BY-SA you can at least exploit downstream derivative work. This
may be more protection than NC-SA, as people will understand that they
have to give back.

Copy edits and translations are probably the only significant
derivatives for text.
My personal experience has been more of both of those for the
CC-BY-NC-SA than the CC-BY-SA licenced material.

>But neither license is a good fit for a borderline viable royalty-based
business. The business would need to switch to a different revenue model.

For non-profits, the revenue model is not the primary function.
My sense is that most organizations that us the NC licence are either
non-profits, or else are releasing material that would not otherwise
be released by them.

Henri wrote:

>FWIW, every time I have had income from writing software, I have
stood on the shoulders of Free Software authors (regardless of
whether the software I have written has been Free or proprietary--I

There are two major difference between writing software, and writing a document.
* Software can, and routinely  contain routines, or algorithms that
can be reused in a completly different work. That typically doesn't
occur in text.
* Software support can generate revenue.  That doesn't exist for text.

> NC prevents others from building business on what is potential usefulness for others but unused surplus for the licensor--or any attempt degenerates to the permission culture.

I haven't done a survey of the type of material that is slapped with
an NC licence.  Most of what I've seen has either been educational, or
religious orientated.  In both instances,
the only restriction is selling the derivative product --- if there is one.

> CC-BY-SA is also better for you in the sense that if someone else
modifies your work, his/her NC doesn't take away *your* possibility
of making money if you figure out a business model.

You are assuming that income generation is the driving force behind
the selection of the NC licence.  I'm not convinced that it is.  For
both educational and religious material, the driving force is to
maximize the distribution, at the lowest cost to the original author,
and the end user.  [This gets back to the dual licence: "All Rights
Reserved" for the hard copy, and "NC" for the e-text.]

Drew wrote:

>Plus, all those people who might spread your reputation while trying to make
some money for themselves will pass on your NC work and may promote my BY-SA
work instead.

This depends upon the subject of the material.  For music, your
promotion may make a difference.  For a commentary on _The Gospel of
Judas of Keiroth_, the insight it provides are going to be more
important than the licence.

> I know this might be stupid on my part when it comes to plain ND works as I could sell them,

ND is as restrictive as NC, perhaps more so.


Ethical conduct is a vice.
Corrupt conduct is a virtue.

Motto of Nacarima.

More information about the cc-licenses mailing list