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Re: migration of wiki material: suggested licence and legal issues

On Mon, 03 Oct 2005, Francesco Poli wrote:
> On Sun, 2 Oct 2005 15:38:11 -0700 Don Armstrong wrote:
> > On Sun, 02 Oct 2005, Francesco Poli wrote:
> > > If that allow public users to get the source form of the wiki
> > > content through the same medium (http) they use for accessing the
> > > wiki itself, that's fine.
> > 
> > No, it would be through a different medium, rsync; but they'd have
> > access to the content which is the critical aspect here.
> In that case, I'm afraid that no GPL'd contribution could be accepted.
> Why?
> Because the new wiki would be offering access to copy the compiled form
> (that's the HTML generated by the wiki engine) from a designated place
> (http://wiki.debian.org), but offering access to copy the source code
> (that's the formatting-enriched text) that is not equivalent (rsync is
> not equivalent to http), nor from the same place (if a mirror has to be
> used).

     If distribution of executable or object code is made by offering
     access to copy from a designated place, then offering equivalent
     access to copy the source code from the same place counts as
     distribution of the source code, even though third parties are
     not compelled to copy the source along with the object code.[1]

The above clause requires "equivalent access", not the "same medium".
Rsync is an open protocol that has clients that are freely available;
thus, assuming the rsyncd is publicly available, it satisfies this
clause.[2] The physical machine upon which the actual rsync daemon
resides doesn't matter, so long as there is a link from the wiki to
it. [Note that the clause above says "offering equivalent access from
the same place" not that the place from which the source code must be
obtained need be the same.]

> > I think you missed the section where I suggested "removal of
> > incorrectly licensed material at some future date"
> I still believe that this would not be enough to motivate the
> relicensing effort.

If removal after some transition period isn't enough motiviation to
relicense the content, then the content *should* be jettisoned. It
either gets relicenced by some future day Y, or it goes away.

> IMHO, migration should go on piecewise, as the old contents get
> relicensed: that is to say, each old wiki part is migrated as soon
> as it's correctly relicensed.

It's pretty much all or nothing; the wiki can't be trivially migrated
piecemeal with some links functioning and others not.

Don Armstrong

1: GPLv2 §3 http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl.html

2: Even if you disagree, you can always still click on the "Edit"
button and get the source...

http://www.donarmstrong.com              http://rzlab.ucr.edu

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