[OSM-legal-talk] CC Attribution Share Alike License with OSMF exception

Frederik Ramm frederik at remote.org
Sat Sep 6 00:06:30 BST 2008


Brian Quinion wrote:
> OK, so either not OSMF (but a group setup for the purpose) or OSMF
> with better protections for who can be a board member.  How about a
> group made up of interested parties with a minimum amount of data
> submitted to OSM... :-)

See, you're starting to walk the path towards non-freedom already. 
You're starting to talk of criteria, of restrictions, of authority.

I'm a PD guy as you know, and I think that if we don't manage to go PD, 
having someone who could at least waive the BY-SA clauses for specific 
uses would be nice and helpful. I personally don't view my contributions 
as "my" data and I don't feel I need to "entrust" my data to someone - 
just use it, whoever you are.

BUT to get the more paranoid people among us to accept such a body with 
these rights, you will have to set up a huge and complicated process 
with checks and balances and positions of power and well-defined 
decision making processes and all - a real ugly beast if you ask me. 
People will ask "how do you ensure that OSMF doesn't fall into evil 
hands", and you will start to invent boards of directors and boards of 
overseers and whatnot, and all these will have to be chosen by some kind 
of vote; then you'll have to define who may vote. But then what happens 
if the evil guys just register all their users as members and simply 
jump over whatever the minimum criterion is we put up? So you'll have to 
put in some clauses that enable you to kick out people or reject their 
applications or remove their voting rights. Of course, then, there needs 
to be a provision for people to appeal against such a decision. Etc. 
etc. etc.

In the end, you'll have set up something that is even more complex, 
unclear, and liable to interpretation than the license itself, a 
veritable beast that only bureaucratic control freaks can ride.

"Unhappy with something? Just submit it, in written form, with three 
copies, to our under-secretary for member queries, and it might just get 
on the agenda for next year's AGM..."

I am not a control freak. I think formal decisions, votes, authority and 
all that should be avoided wherever possible. As long as we can manage 
with our "do-ocracy", let us do that.

And I know what I'm speaking of, I'm from Germany ;-)


Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail frederik at remote.org  ##  N49°00'09" E008°23'33"

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