[sword-devel] For ALL On The List: Copyright Considerations, What do you think?

Jerry Hastings sword-devel@crosswire.org
Sat, 11 Jan 2003 10:35:43 -0700

At 10:05 AM 1/11/2003 -0300, Christian Renz wrote:
>I think we need only two categories for modules:
>1. Can be distributed without restrictions
>2. Has restrictions on distribution
>The CD only contains modules of category 1. ...

I think you mean "The CD *should* only contain modules of category 1." At 
this time there are modules on the CD that are for "non-commercial 
distribution." That is not "without restrictions."

Some licences were given to all users--came with the text before Crosswire 
got the text. Some licences were given to Crosswire directly. Consideration 
needs to be given to those modules that specify that Crosswire has 
permission to distribute. Are all Crosswire permission the same, and just 
what do they mean? How far down the distribution chain are these 
permissions valid? I would guess that there could be modules that Crosswire 
can distribute without restrictions while another party may be restricted 
(Perhaps it is ok for Crosswire to charge a cost+S&H fee while it would not 
be permitted for another to do so). Do these licenses go with a module as 
long as the text remains in SWORD format and/or intended to be view by a 
program using the SWORD lib, or are they valid only when the user gets the 
module directly from Crosswire? If a there are any modules that need to be 
gotten directly from Crosswire, I would not put those on the CD.

I think I would change your category 1, to "Can be distributed  *by anyone, 
in SWORD format, for use with SWORD software,*  without further restrictions."

For the CD, I don't think we care if a module would be restricted without 
SWORD software, and we do want anyone and not just Crosswire to be able to 
distribute. Category 2 would be anything with further restriction.

Another possibility is, include modules on the CD that would match category 
1 but are restricted to non-commercial use, and make it clear that the CD 
may only be distributed non-commercially. Then provide a link to a CD image 
that has the non-commercially restricted modules removed. It may be better 
to start this way and then change if enough modules can be made to replace 
the restricted ones.

All this may not seem important to readers of this list, but on the support 
list there are people that ask if their church/organization can make copies 
of the CD and sell them, (for various reasons). It is hard to answer them, 
other than to tell them to check each module on the CD for a license. I 
think it would be good to make it easy for these people and help keep them 
out of copyright troubles. Also, if they are kept out of trouble it helps 
Crosswire to have a good name with the sources of the licenses.

If other people want to take modules from the CD to create or use with 
other software, they can check the license of each module.