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Re: data "copyright" or not -- what is Debian's take?

Yaroslav Halchenko <debian@onerussian.com> writes:

> Should I advise to blindly attach a copyright  statement and
> license, possibly copyrighting non-copyrightable, thus committing
> "Copyfraud" in some jurisdictions?

Probably not, as this would be illegal in said jurisdictions.

> What would be the take of Debian ftpmasters whenever they receive a
> package shipping data without clean copyright/license statement and 
> something like this instead:
>    This data has been collected 2010 by Author1, Author2.
>    Please recognise the substantial effort that went into the
>    collection of this data by attributing the authors.
>    Attribute by citing the original publication:
>    Author1, Author2, Title of the paper, where published, 2010,
>    URL: http://....

This is also problematic. First, it does not grant the necessary
permissions for DSFG-freeness in jurisdictions where this would be
needed (e.g., all EU member countries). Second, it imposes a citation
requirement, which is generally regarded as discriminating against field
of endeavor, thus failing DSFG § 3. It is much better to mention the
relevant publication in a note outside the license text. And third, in
jurisdictions where the database creator does not hold any rights to
the database contents, trying to impose such a requirement might again
be regarded as copyfraud.

> Or should I advise to use the text of MIT license, verbally and
> explicitly describing possible uses and disclaiming any warranty?
> but once again without any copyright statement.

I think the best thing would be to use the Open Data Commons PDDL [1],
which was explicitly created for such situations.


[1] http://www.opendatacommons.org/licenses/pddl/1.0/

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