Wiki Licensing Plan and Discussion
Stage 3 of this plan is now complete. We will remain in Stage 4 until we feel we can make no further progress.
At current, the majority of content on the wiki is not covered by any license. As we begin using the wiki as a canonical resource for many things, and as contributions to the wiki begin to fill a larger variety of purposes, we need to cover the content with an appropriate license.
The Fedora Documentation Project has select the Open Publication License without options to cover all formal documentation. We now wish to cover the wiki content under the same license.
Since copyrights cannot be inferred, and since few members of the EditGroup have completed the Contributor License Agreement (CLA), we do not believe we have the necessary copyright authority to apply this license without consent from all past contributors. We require that all past contributors to the wiki agree to license their contributions under the OPL, or that they agree retroactively to the CLA.
Stage 1: Announce the plan.
Stage 1 of our plan would be the general announcement of the change and our plan. Announcements would be sent to several mailing lists, posted on FedoraNEWS, and noted obviously on the wiki itself.
Stage 2: Freeze the EditGroup and document the new requirement.
Stage 2 of our plan would be freezing the EditGroup from further changes until the process is complete and the new requirement is clearly documented on the wiki. This is to take no more than 3 days. During this time, nobody should be added to the EditGroup, giving us the opportunity to complete our plan without conflict.
Stage 3: Clear the EditGroup and set up a tracker.
Stage 3 of our plan involves adjusting our processes to require that all new wiki editors agree to the CLA using the Fedora Account System, just like many other Fedora facilities.
We will move all members from the EditGroup to a tracking page, leaving only those who we know have completed the CLA. This new tracking page should be a group page, just like the EditGroup, and should have an ACL definition that allows anyone listed on the page to edit it. This way, a contributor can remove their name to signify agreement to the OPL. This page should be carefully watched to prevent tampering.
The movement of the EditGroup to the tracking page will be a manual process, which PatrickBarnes has volunteered to conduct. He will attempt to leave members of the cla_done group on the EditGroup page, when he can identify them.
Stage 4: Repopulation of the EditGroup.
Our new tracking page will list all former members of the EditGroup. This will serve as a list of past contributors who need to agree to their contributions being licensed under the OPL. When a contributor has agreed to the OPL, they may remove their name from the tracking page.
As they complete the CLA, they can notify the other EditGroup members so that they may be re-added to the EditGroup.
Stage 5: Removal of un-licensed content.
This painful manual process will involve tracking down contributions made by those who have not cleared their name from the tracking page and removing those contributions from the wiki.
We should allow a sufficient interval between Stage 3 and Stage 5 to allow contributors to agree to the new terms and to minimize the amount of un-licensed content that must be located and removed.
Once this is complete, we can say that all wiki content is covered by the new license.
The Future Process
After this plan has been carried out, new contributors would have to join the Account System and complete the CLA before they could be added to the EditGroup. Since so many other Fedora tools already require an Account System account, the impact of this requirement should be acceptable.
If it is preferred, we could add a field for a person's WikiName to the Account System, and set up the EditGroup to be exported from the Account System at regular intervals, automating the process.
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Who is going to be the copyright holder? The Fedora Foundation? The original author retains copyright, but grants a very broad license to the Fedora Project under the terms of the Contributor License Agreement .