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Re: Copyright in public domain package

On Thu, Sep 07, 2006 at 11:35:54AM +0100, MJ Ray wrote:
> Michael Hanke <michael.hanke@gmail.com>
> > [ Please keep me CC'ed, I'm not subscribed. ]
> [...]
> > I talked to upstream and they replaced those statement with something
> > like the following to make their software acceptable for Debian main:
> > 
> > #   The immv file was originally part of FSL - FMRIB's Software Library
> > #   http://www.fmrib.ox.ac.uk/fsl
> > #   immv has now been placed in the public domain.
> > #
> > #   Developed at FMRIB (Oxford Centre for Functional Magnetic Resonance
> > #   Imaging of the Brain), Department of Clinical Neurology, Oxford
> > #   University, Oxford, UK
> > 
> > This should be unambiguous, correct?
> Sorry, I think it's ambiguous. The UK Patent Office (www.patent.gov.uk,
> who also handle much to do with copyright, sadly) sometimes uses 'in the
> public domain' to mean that something has been published or offered for
> sale to the public.
> How has it 'been placed in the public domain'?  I am not aware of any
> way to do that in Oxford besides copyright expiring, or the work somehow
> not qualifying for automatic copyright protection anyway.  It may be
> possible to disclaim all copyright interest in a work, but I'm not sure
> how to do that.
I'm not sure whether I understood completely what you said. I thought the
term 'public domain' states that the authors disclaim ANY copyright of
there work. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

I also do not understand what you mean by 'do that in Oxford'. The
original authors of fsliolib (the relevant part of the package wrt this
copyright issue) are part of the nifticlib upstream team. The whole
thing is a joint effort the create a common or standard format for
medical-imaging data. So effectively fsliolib upstream disclaims the
copyright of their own work. If there is a better way to state this
fact, I would be happy to forward this information to upstream.

> Please ask them to use a MIT/X11-like licence or similar liberal terms.
> If they need specific help, I think oss-watch.ac.uk is still based in
> Oxford.
AFAIK upstream explicitely want this to be without any copyright.

> > What is the appropriate way to note this combination of licenses in the
> > package. Do I simply add this additional copyright to debian/copyright?
> Yes, simply list all relevant permission statements.
Thanks. I'll added the missing statement.

I hope there is a way to get this package in a shape to be acceptable
for Debian main.



GPG key:  1024D/3144BE0F Michael Hanke
ICQ: 48230050

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