[cc-licenses] Version 4:0:Rebranding "noncommercial" to "commercial rights reserved": please don't!

drew Roberts zotz at 100jamz.com
Tue Apr 17 11:24:10 EDT 2012

On Monday 16 April 2012 18:20:57 Heather Morrison wrote:
> For Drew:
> Allowing noncommercial uses is different from reserving commercial rights.

Perhaps it should be and in some realms is, but I have been assured that in 
the copyright laws we are dealing with and the licenses as drafted, it is 

If you put an NC on a work, I assume you are a person wanting all the money 
for yourself. There is no promise at all in an NC license (much less a 
binding promise) that you will not be using the work for commercial purposes. 
There is only a restriction on my that I may not do so.

This puts you in a very privileged position with respect to me and is hardly 
conducive to a commons in my view.

BY-SA on the other hand puts us on a much more equal footing. We can both be 
commercial or not as we choose.

But cc has no license which prevents commercial use by all involved.

> For example, a creator may have no intention of commercializing a work, but
> rather wish to express that a work does not belong to the realm of things
> to be commercialized.

I can see the need and desireability for this myself, but cc does not 
currently have a license for that and when I have broached it years ago, 
there seemed no interest at all and even disdain on the part of some list 

> >From a technical / legal standpoint, this may be difficult if not
> > impossible to distinguish from "commercial rights reserved". From the
> > perspective of expressing what a creator wishes to share, however, there
> > can be a world of difference. From my viewpoint, if CC were to force a
> > choice between "commercial rights reserved" and no reserving commercial
> > rights, then CC becomes all about commercialization, which to me is not
> > at all the vision of the commons. This reinforces an unfortunate tendency
> > in our society to see everything in commodity terms. For this reason, a
> > CC with no noncommercial and "commercial rights reserved" would be
> > something to avoid.
> It would be good to have a have positive statement than "noncommercial",
> but I'm not sure what to suggest. For me, "commons" is what this should be
> (someday).
> best,
> Heather Morrison

all the best,


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