Copyright arrangements for a web project

Ian Jackson ijackson at
Fri Dec 13 16:25:58 UTC 2013

Josh Berkus writes ("Re: Copyright arrangements for a web project"):
> [Ian Jackson:]
> > * Should the project give the licence steward the power to change the
> >   public licence unilaterally in the future in ways other than just
> >   upgrading to newer versions ?  I think the answer is probably "yes"
> >   because the licensing landscape for web applications isn't settled
> >   yet.  Is this a good idea and how should it be done ?
> Even when the steward is a 501(c)3 nonprofit, such a provision would be
> strongly discouraging to contributors.

Thanks for your opinion.

> >   Ideally it would be good to avoid requiring copyright assignment to
> >   the licence steward.  Can this be achieved by some text in the
> >   standard licence rubric eg
> SPI has never handled or supported copyright assignment before.  We'd
> first need to have a policy meeting to see if we even support the idea
> of copyright assignment, and then see if we have the personnel resources
> to actually handle assignment for a specific project.

SPI has certainly "supported" copyright assignment in the sense that
SPI has a published policy about how it will handle any copyrights
that it acquires:

I agree that the CLA paperwork is annoying and best avoided.

> Personally, I'm not a big fan of copyright assignment, so as a warning
> I'd be arguing against SPI supporting this.

The SPI policy discourages it.

> Also, you can't modify the text of the GPL and still call it the GPL.

I don't understand the relevance of that comment.  It's certainly not
anything I was proposing.


More information about the Spi-general mailing list