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cc-licenses - Re: [cc-licenses] Lawsuit over Virgin Mobile's and Ethical Use

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Subject: Development of Creative Commons licenses

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  • From: Rob Myers <rob AT>
  • To: Discussion on the Creative Commons license drafts <cc-licenses AT>
  • Subject: Re: [cc-licenses] Lawsuit over Virgin Mobile's and Ethical Use
  • Date: Sun, 30 Sep 2007 16:15:42 +0100

Prodromos Tsiavos wrote:
Jonathon wrote:
Copyright, or even enforcement of copyright is not the issue. The
major issue is whether or not Virgin should have had model releases or

I totally agree. However, the point I m trying to make relates to the allegation of the claimant that he was misinformed regarding the meaning of the term 'commercial'

"to adequately educate and warn him . of the meaning of commercial use and the ramifications and effects of entering into a license allowing such use."

All I m saying is

(a) that the more we are going to have non-professional creators, the more we will have to deal with legal issues that normally would have been issues involving only professionals.
(b) the practice of introducing terms [e.g. commercial/ noncommercial] that are not recognized or clearly defined by Copyright or other national laws is prone to cause legal disputes

Model releases are irrelevant to copyright law.
A future CC license that contains a "model release" clause would, by
definition, be incompatible with prior licenses. None the less,
material under existing licenses could be converted to a future
license, by a future user, despite that incompatibility.

IMHO the "model release clause" should be in included in the next version of the CC licences, though I m not sure how the incompatibility issue would be resolved.

If a model release warning was included that just clarified that such issues exist, like with Moral Rights, this wouldn't be a compatibility issue. If the licence placed stronger constraints on the user than exist in law genrerally then this would be both a compatibility issue and a very bad idea.

So IMHO model release *requirements* should *not* be in the license.

Model releases are an educational problem not a license language problem. There are many more issues that the license doesn't cover: trademarks, patents, trade secrets, personality and publicity rights, hull designs, seed rights, etc., etc. . What should be in the license (and on the license deed, and in the FAQ) is a general warning that you need to make sure that you have all the rights you need and that the CC license is only a copyright license.

- Rob.

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