[OSM-legal-talk] CC-BY-SA and contractual obligations

Stefan Neufeind openstreetmap at stefan-neufeind.de
Tue Apr 20 21:38:56 BST 2010

On 04/20/2010 10:24 PM, Frederik Ramm wrote:
> Hi,
>     CC-BY-SA means that the receiver of my derived work can do what he 
> pleases, and I must not use technical or contractual methods to keep him 
> from it.


> It can hardly be wrong to advise the customer upfront of what I am going 
> to do; so I could write into my terms and conditions something like:
> "The CC-BY-SA license permits you the free distribution of any data you 
> download from my site, however if you make use of that right, this 
> contract shall be terminated immediately and any advance fees paid by 
> you will not be refunded."
> Do you agree that this is all perfectly legal - i.e. that CC-BY-SA 
> governs only the copyright side of things, but the contractual side is a 
> wholly different beast? Or do you think that by doing the above, I would 
> somehow illegally circumvent the CC-BY-SA "don't add restrictions" rule?

I agree with your view of the topic that such a rule would be okay. It
does not limit the rights you "deliver" to him for your derived work.
And if you reserve the right to maybe terminate a contract without
reason, maybe with 4 weeks upfront notice or so, I can't see why you
shouldn't be allowed to tell anybody your personal view in which case
you might feel like terminating it.

The question could maybe be extended if you could then also e.g.
digitally sign graphics you give out to clients to be able to find out
who "leaked" it. While that might not be "nice" again I don't see why it
would also be included in your freedom to deliver him whatever derived
work you might have created (specially for him).

In the end it's always a small path between "playing nice" with the
community and the freedom you reserve for yourself.

Kind regards,

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