[cc-licenses] Clarification for Non-Derivative License: grayscale from color not a derivative work

Gregor Hagedorn g.m.hagedorn at gmail.com
Sun Jan 1 14:56:30 EST 2012

As far as I understand, copyright refers to the work, not a digital
representation, so that most forms of scaling a digital image or
format changes will not create a derivative, but simply a
representation of the same work.

However, this is less unambigous for reduction of color scale.

Background: Some members of the German Wikipedia discuss to allow
non-free ND licenses in certain cases (specifically where the English
Wikipedia is using images under fair use, e.g. book/CD/DVD covers).
One discussion about allowing non-free licenses is whether this would
require re-users to print in color. The reproduction of a colored work
as grayscale or black and white is seen by some as a substantial
change that results in a derivative work.

I wonder whether CC 4.0 could add a clarification to the ND clause,
that simple, algorithmic reductions of the color depth of still or
moving images is not considered a derivative work.


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