Legal talk:Licenses

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Some of what is said here is not actually accurate and should be updated, perhaps when a new Fedora CLA is drafted or when Fedora documentation switches over to CC-BY-SA. I note the following items:

1) It is not necessarily correct that "At this time, all license agreements shown are governed by the contractual laws of the State of North Carolina and the intellectual property laws of the United States of America, unless otherwise indicated", unless there is an actual choice of law clause stating as much. (It may of course be correct by operation of law.)

2) The Fedora CLA has never been a mechanism for "establish[ing] copyright control under Red Hat, Inc. on behalf of the Fedora Project" -- at least not the way I understand "copyright control". The Fedora CLA, in its current form, is a license from the contributor to Red Hat; the contributor retains copyright, as in any other copyright licensing arrangement. Therefore, it is not true that the CLA causes "a single entity [to] hold copyright". Future revisions of the Fedora CLA will make this very clear.


Fedora Docs Project has moved their documentation and the wiki over to CC-BY-SA. Official announcement is forthcoming. This page should be updated to reflect that license change. --Sparks 17:22, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

Some overdue changes.

This is in reference to Legal:Licenses#The_Contributor_License_Agreement. I wrote about some overdue changes for this page and Richard Fontana replied.

Here is a summary of the changes we are requesting. Some of these changes are not necessary if the new contributor agreement is in place. In the meantime, this page is spreading disinformation and needs an edit ASAP.

  1. The first paragraph about establishing copyright control is inaccurate. Richard wrote, 'The Fedora CLA, in its current form, is a license from the contributor to Red Hat; the contributor retains copyright, as in any other copyright licensing arrangement. Therefore, it is not true that the CLA causes "a single entity [to] hold copyright".'
  2. For the first bullet, while the current CLA allows relicensing, it is not considered a desirable outcome to have to do that; the language should not tout this as a desirable situation to be cheered about.
    • For example, Docs relicensing shows a reasonable effort was made to obtain original copyright holders' permission, and in fact some content that came in pre-CLA where the copyright holder denied relicensing permission was dropped from the project.
  3. The second bullet about one entity to sue - is that really our legal opinion that we're stating? Maybe it should be removed?
  4. The third bullet point seems like a restatement of the first point, although we're not sure - clarification needed.

Richard makes one final request:

  1. Let's please also delete the sentence:
    "At this time, all license agreements shown are governed by the contractual laws of the State of North Carolina and the intellectual property laws of the United States of America, unless otherwise indicated."