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Edited by author.
Last edit: 11:25, 9 October 2007

Do we allow users to relicense a resource (i.e. a derived work) as CC-BY for example? (a non-copyleft license)

Ktucker (talk)01:56, 4 December 2007
Edited by author.
Last edit: 11:17, 9 October 2007

No, because this would open up a way to lock down the knowledge by re-releasing it as (e.g.) copyright all rights reserved.

It might be okay to re-release under a free/libre share-alike license such as CC BY-SA ... but this complicates things (for a start one would need to drop the libre emblem, and successive derived works would have to be exactly CC BY-SA).

Ktucker (talk)11:17, 9 October 2007

Revisiting ...

So, a "Libre Puro License" would have to be 'copyleftish' (i.e. perpetuate freedoms to have any impact) whereas a Libre Puro Emblem would not (and would probably have a greater impact if it became 'cool').

For a Libre Puro license: people would aspire to produce Libre Puro licensed resources and be assured that the libre nature would be preserved in future derived works. But it is currently difficult to live up to this license and we would be starting from scratch.

To qualify for a Libre Puro emblem all components would need to be appropriately mixed (wrt licenses), comply with the Free Cultural Works/ w:Libre Knowledge definition (the 'Libre Emblem' requires no more than this, Libre Puro requires more: ...), be in free file formats and (where applicable), served via libre services (e.g. via GNU Affero licensed resources), free protocols, etc.. This is easier than meeting the requirements of a Libre Puro License which needs to ensure that the freedoms are perpetuated in derived works.

KTucker (talk)10:10, 20 April 2011


If I'm reading this correctly, the fundamental difference between a "Libre Puro License" and say CC-BY-SA would be no requirement for attribution under a "Libre Puro License"?

It seems that there is one-way compatibility, i.e. Libre Puro ==> to compatible license, but not the other way around?

You'll need to think about how to resolve the attribution issue. From recollection, the legal code of a CC license through written permission, can remove the requirement for attribution under a CC-License, so the Libre Puro legal code would need to provide for this one-way compatibility.

(I'm speaking under correction here -- so you'll need to check up on this.)

Mackiwg (talk)11:37, 20 April 2011

So, should this license be precise wrt share-alike? (i.e. "Libre" only for derived works?). All the share-alike or copyleft licenses I know of specify that derived works should be licensed under exactly the same license as the original work. The designers of those licenses have probably thought about this before ... and I am gravitating towards the same conclusion.

Ktucker (talk)01:56, 4 December 2007

Hey Kim,

I suspect that in the near future we will see legal compatibility among copyleft licenses. For example the permission to release a derivative work originally licensed under CC-BY-SA to be released as GNU(FDL).

This will go a long way in furthering the aims of the free content movement.

Mackiwg (talk)01:56, 4 December 2007

It will be interesting to see how this will be achieved. Probably along the same lines as "share similarly" proposed here.

The Attribution requirement of all the Creative Commons 3.0 licenses undermines the free culture movement. A lot of people seem to ignore it in many contexts ... perhaps as it is so burdensome to keep track of the attribution trees.

In academia there is already a culture of attribution. In other contexts, attribution may not be required - e.g. kids in copy-modify-mix and share mode for fun among their friends.

Abuse of digital resources may be dealt with via legal processes other than copyright.

Ktucker (talk)01:56, 4 December 2007

Hi Kim,

I'm not sure whether I'd go as far as to say that attribution undermines the free culture movement. I don't see that the ethic of recognising the building blocks of new or reconfigured knowledge is intended to undermine the free knowledge movement.

I do agree that in many contexts (cultural and otherwise) that attribution may not be required or appropriate.

Regarding Creative Commons - in the early days attribution was an option selected by the copyright holder. I understand that in 98% of the licenses users chose to require attribution and they dropped this as an optional restriction of the license.

Perhaps we should lobby for reintroducing "BY" as an optional restriction in the CC license?

While licensing is important - I think that sometimes we spend too much time grappling with the idiosyncrasies of different licenses at the expense of widening the base of libre knowledge. Licensing is a mechanism or tool to deal with the ludicrous situation of copyright insofar as knowledge is concerned. I view copyleft licenses as a clever hack to deal with the problem of copyright and focus more energy on building capacity and community to achieve a free curriculum.


Mackiwg (talk)01:56, 4 December 2007

Hi Wayne,

I did not say "intended" to undermine it. It just does on account of the burden of managing trees of attributions.

In academia we attribute anyway even for old PD works.

The 98% is not a valid reason to drop CC-SA. So, yes, we should lobby for Attribution to be an option and reinstate CC-SA.

Right now CC-SA 3.0 is not an option (retired at 1.0), so the percentage of people using it is not likely to grow (as I believe it would).

Insisting on "BY" reinforces the notion of "IP" which has been contended in many places (e.g. here).

Keep up the good work towards a libre curriculum :-).

Ktucker (talk)01:56, 4 December 2007

There is still a 1.0 version of the CC-SA license that one could theoretically use, but since that would cordon off all of that material in yet another silo where none of it could be remixed with BY-SA or GFDL material, I think that would be a big mistake. Better to simply release it into the public domain or otherwise under a "no rights reserved" license.

SteveFoerster (talk)01:56, 4 December 2007

Thanks Steve for the comment. Agreed, it does not make sense to use the CC-SA 1.0 license - for the reasons you mention and also because it is out of date and lacks some of the requirements included in the 3.0 licenses (e.g. relating to DRM) - hence the "share similarly" approach suggested here.

Apparently, in Europe it is not legally allowable to release your work directly into the public domain. The only way for one's work to be in the PD is for its copyright to expire.

Do you know of any "no rights reserved" licenses? As far as I can see there is still a need for a license that would be more or less equivalent to PD.

This Libre License is also trying to make a stronger statement about consistency right down to the requirements for free data formats and free software for manipulating and sharing knowledge resources. It is more about a shared set of values around inclusivity: see Declaration on libre knowledge.

Ktucker (talk)22:48, 5 December 2007

Accepting non-share-similarly licenses (i.e. those that do not perpetuate the freedoms in derived works, like CC-BY) would be similar to the GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL) tactic: - to grow the number of users of libre resources.

Software libraries licensed under the GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL) may be included with proprietary software.

Typically (and tactically), this is applied where there is already an alternative available to the writers of non-free software.

By allowing writers of non-free software to include LGPL software libraries, we grow awareness and the number of users of free software.

See: Why you shouldn't use the Lesser GPL for your next library.

So far, we have not adopted that tactic for libre knowledge. (The Free Culture movement has, in a sense, via CC-BY)

The CC-BY license is the equivalent of LGPL in this sense. Let's keep Attribution there (:-) and reluctantly tolerate those who don't care for freedom in derived works etc. using CC-BY.

On account of the existence of CC-BY, we do not need yet another nuance of "libre licenses" akin to the GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL).

Currently, most knowledge and cultural works are easier to mimic than software - e.g. if one wants to replace a proprietary image of a house depicting different compartments/facets of some concept, just sketch an equivalent tree with branches (instead of rooms off a passage in the house).

But it is not always that easy, and may become more difficult as intelligent web services become more common among networked knowledge resources. These are provided via software. Currently we recommend the GNU Affero General Public License for such services.

Ktucker (talk)23:39, 18 February 2008

The issue of network/web services is being taken up here.

Ktucker (talk)08:17, 22 July 2008

Updates: recently updated the pre-amble to include:

  • a definition of "libre license" on the page
  • reference to "libre share" - which is not copyleft
    • (more like "one more step of freedom" - e.g. a derived work (or even unmodified copies) may be CC-BY if no other components disqualify CC-BY).
KTucker (talk)13:23, 7 November 2009

Wayne just reminded me of CC0. This would be equivalent to Libre Puro in that attribution is not required and all the freedoms apply. So, perhaps there is no need for the Libre Puro License, and it would be better as an emblem indicating that the resource is in a libre format or is (or is fully editable by) software libre, and not patent-encumbered, etc.

KTucker (talk)22:07, 7 December 2009