[sword-devel] Neural Networks and Optical Character Recognition

DM Smith dmsmith555 at yahoo.com
Sun Apr 27 04:39:07 MST 2008

On Apr 27, 2008, at 1:59 AM, Chris Little wrote:

> DM Smith wrote:
>> My 2 cents (personal opinion) as one who is not a lawyer:
>> For a work that is not under copyright, the text is public domain.  
>> But
>> anyone can fairly claim that their markup of the text is copyrighted.
>> For example, in the KJV work that we did, we marked it up. We can
>> legitimately claim the copyright for the osis elements, but not for
>> the actual KJV content. The Strong's numbering of the NT was the
>> result of volunteer effort on behalf of CrossWire. And legitimately,
>> CrossWire can claim copyright for that too.
> As Jerry mentions, US copyright is only concerned with creative
> expression. The relevant publication that explains what can be covered
> in derivative works is Copyright Circular 14:
> http://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ14.html.

This is an easy and good read. Thanks.

> So whether markup is covered by copyright depends on whether it is
> creative. If you're converting a printed text to HTML and you use tags
> like <p>, <b>, <i>, etc. to approximate the printed presentation,  
> those
> tags are in no way creative or copyrightable.

In reading the above publication, there seems to be wide latitude in  
what defines creative, what defines substantial and also original.

I agree with you that style markup that preserves an approximation of  
the printed presentation is not creative.

> With our KJV text, we had
> two components: automatic tagging by scripts and human
> tagging/correction. The automatic tagging is definitely not creative.
> And I think it was our intent that the human tagging accurately  
> reflect
> the history of the text rather than be some sort of creative  
> expression.
> The last point is certainly debatable, but I am of the opinion that
> nothing about our KJV is copyrightable (except under Crown Copyright  
> in
> the UK).

I think that our KJV conf states it well:
Any copyright that might be obtained for this effort is held by  
CrossWire Bible Society (c) 2003 and CrossWire Bible Society hereby  
grants a general public license to use this text for any purpose.

That is, even if we have grounds, we are placing the entire work under  
a very liberal use license.

Having worked on it cleaning the KJV up (which in and of itself is not  
creative, but is a boatload of work) I think that the NT tagging was  
creative. An effective goal of the effort was to have every word in  
the NT map to the words in the TR, noting its position and its  
Strong's number. And also to note all the words by position in the TR  
that were not translated into the KJV.

Part of my effort that was creative was content markup. For example,  
the identification and markup of inscriptions and the determination of  
what headings are canonical and those which are not.

All of my effort, creative or not, original or not, substantial or  
not, on the KJV is freely given to CrossWire to make it freely  
available for any purpose.

> The same goes for ALL of those Bibles from Importantia where they  
> claim
> copyright on the Strong's numbers (but not the text). You can't
> copyright Strong's numbers tagging if you're being faithful--only if
> you're making it up.
>> If one were to "enhance" a work that is no longer copyrighted, one
>> could legitimately claim a copyright for the changes. And without
>> identifying the changes one could claim a copyright for the work as a
>> whole. I have seen copyright claims on the KJV (just visit a book
>> store and look for copyright info on the publications) and have heard
>> that publishers deliberately introduce changes that they are able to
>> identify as their own. I don't know if it is true or just hearsay.
> Watermarking can help you know where a text came from. You could use  
> it
> to demonstrate a violation of license terms, but it doesn't make a
> public domain work into a copyrightable derivative work. The
> watermarking itself isn't even copyrightable because (again) it's not
> creative.

OK, I missed the "creative" part. Change "enhance" to "enhance, in  
line with the legal definition of copyrightable derivative work". The  
point is that the publisher is not obligated to identify the  
derivative changes.

And I think your point is that publishers may be claiming copyright  
for something that is not creative.

In Him,

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