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Subject: Development of Creative Commons licenses

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  • From: jbn AT (J.B. Nicholson-Owens)
  • To: cc-licenses AT
  • Subject: Re: Require Notification option?
  • Date: Tue, 30 Dec 2003 13:29:02 -0600

Elisabeth Riba wrote:
> I was just poking about the site and noticed the proposal for link-back
> attribution. I don't necessarily need a hotlink, but I would like to at
> least *know* where my work is appearing. I want to see a notification
> option -- not for permission, but just as a courtesy.

In my opinion, if you're not granting permission dependant on notification,
the notification does not belong in the license. I would prefer a short and
clear license made of things I am required to do. You can ask for
notification on from where you distribute the work or on the packaging of
the work.

> I'd also like there to be some option for allowing derivative works only
> with some identification of what has been altered, so I'm not falsely
> credited for modifications that weren't mine.

This I used to like, but not to this extent--I used to want to allow
derivative works (even on my political statements) so long as the new work
made it clear the new work was derived from my older work and that the new
work does not necessarily express my opinion. I don't need a changelog. At
the same time, I want to permit anonymous derivative works (so political
dissidents can legally make use of my expressions).

But then I got to thinking about the matter beyond copyright law. Perhaps
this too is better handled outside a copyright license by distributing a
cryptographically signed copy of the work (if the work is digitally encoded)
so people can quickly determine if they've got a verbatim copy of my work or
something else.

We still have libel, slander, and fraud law to rely on if someone is trying
to misrepresent us for the purpose of harming our reputation. As I
understand things, preventing these activities is outside the job of

I figure if I have a problem with misrepresentation, it's probably because I
have a big audience; an audience large enough to hear me when I speak again
and correct those who misrepresented me.

  • Re: Require Notification option?, J.B. Nicholson-Owens, 12/30/2003

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