[Osmf-talk] Blanket copyright licence in Contributor Terms

Gervase Markham gerv at gerv.net
Thu Dec 17 05:40:26 UTC 2009

On 15/12/09 06:25, Matt Amos wrote:
> let me rephrase it; suppose that the general feeling about what is the
> right sort of license in the OSM community changes significantly. it's
> not unreasonable to expect the composition of a community to change, or
> for those comprising the community to change their minds.

But hang on... hasn't the straw poll established that at the moment, 
over 50% of the community consider their work PD, right now?

Why is it not possible that, as soon as this licence goes through, the 
OSMF could say "OK, we want to have a poll about the sort of licence the 
project should have". They have one, over 50% of the project votes for 
PD, and the OSMF uses the rights in the contributor terms to make the 
whole project PD.

Why is that an impossible or implausible scenario? It requires no 
zeitgeist change - the zeitgeist is already in the right place.

>>> or the law changes in a way ODbL can't deal with,
>> How can the law change in a way that you can't change a legal agreement
>> to handle?
> i don't know, i'm not a lawyer or a legislator. but i'm willing to
> consider the possibility that laws will be passed which ODbL can't, or
> won't, react to.

Laws could be passed that a legal agreement *can't* react to? That 
sounds like an oxymoron.

Database-related laws could be passed that the Open Database Licence 
stewards *won't* react to?

If we don't trust the stewards of the ODbL enough to think that they 
will continue to make it the best licence they can for open databases, 
then why are we trusting them with our data now?


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