[OSM-talk] BSD/CC-by/LGPL vs. SharedAlike - decide now and forever

Lars Aronsson lars at aronsson.se
Sun Mar 26 03:42:57 BST 2006

Colin Mackay wrote:

> Playing devil's advocate: What about the creative expression of 
> the user to move the GPS receiver in a specific pattern in order 
> for the device to generate said statistics? How is that 
> different from, say, moving a stylus over a graphics tablet in 
> order to draw a picture? Surely the result generated in that way 
> are also "raw data" (especially in a vector drawing package).

This is an interesting case when full (life+70 year) copyright 
could theoretically apply to raw data, which is otherwise covered 
only by catalog or database rights (which expire 15 years after 
publication).  But there could still be ways to go around this.

If you translate a (copyrighted) book, the translation is a 
derivate work, to which the translator and original author own the 
copyright together, meaning that both have the right to veto its 
publication.  But if you compile an alphabetic index to a 
(copyrighted) book, the index is yours alone.  It is not a derived 
work, and the original author has no rights in it.

(This principle also has another application: If you want to 
republish Charles Darwin's "Origin of Species", which is out of 
copyright, you risk that somebody bootlegs your edition and you 
lose sales.  To secure your printing investment, you can compile 
and include an index, being your selling point, to which you will 
have 15 years of exclusive catalog rights.)

Similar to the indexing case, if you take somebody's artistically 
shaped GPX file and chop it up in small chunks, such as a table of 
the coordinates where right and left turns were made, from which 
the whole original cannot be reassembled, then your table should 
not be contaminated by the original copyright.

  Lars Aronsson (lars at aronsson.se)
  Aronsson Datateknik - http://aronsson.se

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