posts tagged with the keyword ‘copyright’

2010.09.01

Here’s a video from BarCampMadison, which took place August 28, 2010 in Madison, Wisconsin. The session was titled “Intellectual Property” and was presented by Robyn Perrin.

Just a note on this video, the production is a bit poor, but I felt it was still worth sharing. I basically set up the camera, hit record, and ran off to another session. I did the best I could to clean up the audio, but didn’t really edit the image quality at all.

This video is also available at blip.tv and Archive.org and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License.

2008.10.25

I’m never sure if I think about these issues more because I’ve been involved in publishing for over 20 years, or if it’s because I’m a big fan of Creative Commons, or because I create music and images… or maybe it’s a combination of all those things…

Chances are, if you are reading this blog, that you are a publisher too. Most us are nowadays… If you have a blog, or a Flickr account, or upload videos to the web, you are a publisher. So my question to you is, do you think about the rights of others when you publish something you created, and incorporate their work?

I’ve seen it too many times in videos… someone puts together the visuals, the part they created, and then grabs some artist’s song to drop on top of it. Often it will be a song from a well known artist, used without permission. People often say “I’m not making money from it” or “It’s just for fun, no one is really going to see it” but saying those things dismisses the value of the artist’s work, and missed the fact that by publishing, you are showing it to the world.

Worse yet, is when people do this and re-license the work. Sorry, but you can’t just grab some Foo Fighter’s song, use it in your video, and put it under a Creative Commons license… or can you?

This is where I think things get a little gray. I mean, my old pal Dave Slusher of the Evil Genius Chronicles often uses material in his shows that have different licenses, and makes note of it in the show. So while the portions of his show he creates are under a specific license of his choosing, other parts (often songs) are not.

So the question is, can you create a work, put it under a license, and use material from different licenses in it? We start to see that whole “infection” thing they talk about in the software world.

I don’t have the answer to this, and it’s one of the continually nagging parts of licensing, and copyright, and Creative Commons I think about.

2007.08.17

I’ve had this argument many times with Justin… defining what exactly makes something open-source.

He is confident in telling me that Firefox is not open-source, and (as I understand it) he believes this because the Mozilla Organization, which controls the source code for Firefox, does not easily allow people to contribute code. They keep a tight grip on who was their bits put into Firefox. And while it is true that there are pieces in Firefox that you cannot use elsewhere (branding elements, graphics, etc.) I still believe that Firefox is open-source due to the fact that it uses the Mozilla Public License which is considered an open-source license by the Open Source Initiative.

I asked the question on Pownce recently, Is the Firefox web browser open-source?

And I think it’s a question that most people who have a basic understanding of the term “open-source” would answer “yes” to, but… Is that the case?

I thought maybe searching for “firefox is not open source” would unveil some great conspiracy I was not aware of, but no such luck.

Personally, I don’t think allowing people to contribute code is a requirement of open-source. It may be an important component of community and “open-ness” but accepting someone else’s code into your project does not seem to be a requirement. Providing the source code, and allowing people to modify and use that source code does seem to be a requirement, and though I’ve always downloaded binaries, I just downloaded the source code to Firefox.

So what is the scoop here? Is Firefox open-source?



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