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Re: Effort to change IETF's copying conditions for RFCs

John Hasler <jhasler@debian.org> writes:

> Simon Josefsson writes:
>> Is that license acceptable to the Debian community?
> Looks fine to me.  Is it going to be retroactive?

It is a good question.  The RFC Editor has claimed that the RFC 2026
license apply to older RFCs too, in particular RFC 1510 which
concerned me at the time enough so that I asked them.  I wonder if
that action is really legal, but if it is, it may be doable again.

Also, RFCs with the new license doesn't include the license template
itself, it just reference BCP 78.  So if BCP 78 is updated, perhaps it
automatically apply to RFCs that simply reference BCP 78.  I doubt the
legality of that too.

FYI: I will travel to the next IETF meeting and discuss this problem
in the IPR WG.  I will create a presentation and ask for feedback on
it on this list.  I have also significantly revised
<http://josefsson.org/bcp78broken/> and the I-D that goes together
with the page.  Please read it and tell me what you think.  If you can
explain matters like this to a wide audience, your help would be very
welcome...  I want the document to be as neutral as possible, while
still explaining that things are currently problematic.

The actual license text has only changed slightly though.  My proposed
license reads:

    c.  The Contributor grants third parties the right to copy and
        distribute the Contribution, with or without modification, in
        any medium, without royalty.  The IETF requests that any
        citation or excerpt of unmodified text reference the RFC or
        other document from which the text is derived. If the text is
        modified in any way other than translation, any claim of
        endorsement by the IETF or status within its document series
        must be removed.


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