incubator-general mailing list archives

Site index · List index
Message view « Date » · « Thread »
Top « Date » · « Thread »
From "Roy T. Fielding" <>
Subject Re: Derby code copyright question
Date Mon, 04 Oct 2004 15:40:25 GMT
On Oct 4, 2004, at 7:23 AM, Rodent of Unusual Size wrote:
> Jennifer B Machovec wrote:
>> I thought it might be helpful to give some background on the "all 
>> rights
>> reserved" phrase.  The requirement for this phrase originated in the
>> Buenos Aires Convention of 1910, which provided that a copyright 
>> owner had
>> to make an express statement of the reservation of property rights in
>> order to have copyright protection in all countries that were party 
>> to the
>> convention.  Because of subsequent changes in copyright law that I 
>> won't
>> bore you with (but can if you really want....), this phrase 
>> essentially
>> became useless for works first published in the United States and most
>> other North and South American countries.  However, there are still a 
>> few
>> countries in which this is a meaningful declaration, and for that 
>> reason
>> IBM (and many other copyright owners, including ASF in its standard
>> notice) retain this phrase to avoid such an exposure.  It does not in 
>> any
>> way change or restrict license grants that are made by the copyright
>> owner.

The phrase, "All rights reserved", is a formal notice that all
rights granted under existing copyright law are retained by
the copyright holder and that legal action may be taken against
copyright infringement.  It means the same thing now as it did
in 1910, even though the Berne Convention made it a default.
Among other things, it places the recipient on notice that the
copyright owner may exclude others from copying the work in
the future, regardless of how this copy was obtained.

It is the default. Stating it explicitly just reaffirms the
default.  Stating it in combination with "... licensed under
the terms of the Apache License 2.0" is a contradiction, which
is generally a bad thing and especially so when we are talking
about rights that are already difficult to give away.

That is why it is not in any of the "notice templates" given by
modern open source licenses.

>> As far as the copyright notice in the individual files, while I'm not
>> certain that there is a problem regarding the Apache Derby reference, 
>> it
>> would be consistent with the ASL v.2.0 instructions to add a notice
>> stating: "Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the 
>> "License");
>> you may not use this file except in compliance with the License."  
>> That
>> should remove any ambiguity.
> roy, does that answer your concerns or not?

Well, those are the words that our template uses, but they don't
belong in the NOTICE file.  The NOTICE file contains only those phrases
that we insist must be displayed in places like the About box of a
binary-only release.  It is not a list of copyright notices.

In any case, the licensing work on 2.0 was done with the assumption
that ASF works would be under Copyright The Apache Software Foundation.
Failing to have that in the code at the beginning of the project means
that later Contributions to the project are implicitly made to IBM,
not the Apache Software Foundation, and we in fact have no rights to
that code other than those granted explicitly in CLAs.  In short, there
is no end to the grief caused by this "oversight", and it won't be
solved short of getting a copyright assignment, or at least behaving
as if such an assignment exists.

The only notice other than the simple ASF copyright that makes sense
is the explicit notice list that I forwarded to the board, which
lists the ASF and all copyright owners and explicitly states that
each copyright owner has licensed their work to the ASF under a
contributor's agreement.  It is messy, but at least it is both factual
and consistent with the Contributor definitions in AL 2.0.

That is my opinion.  I asked the board to get Robyn's opinion on
any other alternatives, so that is where you should pursue some
kind of resolution.


To unsubscribe, e-mail:
For additional commands, e-mail:

View raw message