[tei-council] jTEI licensing (was Re: Fwd: TEI licensing issues)

Kevin Hawkins kevin.s.hawkins at ultraslavonic.info
Wed Sep 14 10:55:26 EDT 2011

On 9/14/2011 10:24 AM, James Cummings wrote:
> On 14/09/11 14:43, Kevin Hawkins wrote:
>> Approach (a) has been known the worsen the orphan works problem because
>> it becomes difficult to track down the author to get additional rights
>> not covered by the original agreement between the author and the
>> publisher.  For that reason, I wrote the agreement to use approach (b),
>> with a very large bundle of rights given back to the author.  In fact, I
>> tried to grant back everything I could think of.  jTEI also grant rights
>> to the reader (through CC-BY-ND).
> I do sympathise with the orphan works problem.  That is a real
> problem, but since copyright infringement is about risk it is
> often a question of whether you can demonstrate you made an
> attempt to track down the author (and/or rights holders).   My
> problem was partly with the ND... I can think of lots of cases
> where I might want to take a corpus of jTEI articles (after it
> has been going for awhile) and then make a derivative work out of
> them.  I'm not talking about republishing them but other types of
> analysis of visualization of information in them. ND means I
> can't do that except by asking the TEI-C to re-license it to me.

... which is much easier than finding each author and asking them to do, 
hence my approach.  (I think you understand this, but I want to make it 
clear for others.)

>> James's approach is to do (a) but give a huge large bundle of rights
>> (CC-BY) to the publisher *and to readers*.  This would in fact probably
>> not worsen the orphan works problem because we have trouble imaging
>> anyone wanting to make use of a work in a way that the rightsholder
>> would approve of if the rightsholder could be found.
> That is generally what I was thinking. At digitalmedievalist we
> license our journal articles (and website) CC+BY+NC. That is, to
> be more specific, the article authors license it as such, and
> then under that license we put it on our website. While I would
> rather it not be NC, that is what was decided. The orphan work
> problem, as you rightly suggest, will rear its ugly head when
> someone comes to us and asks us if they can publish some of the
> articles commercially.  We'd probably just say no, but in truth
> since the copyright is vested in the authors it isn't our
> decision to make.  My unease at the TEI-C taking copyright is the
> same unease I feel at giving OUP my copyright when publishing an
> article with them.  I think wherever possible copyright should
> remain with the creator of the object and just as broad as
> licensing as possible given to the publisher.  I fully agree that
> your way is certainly easier (my experience at the OTA certainly
> has taught me that).

Your unease at giving OUP your copyright is something that librarians 
preach about often -- that you should be aware of what your sign and 
read it closely.  On the other hand, I wanted to establish the TEI-C as 
a model publisher that would in fact not deprive the author of any 
meaningful right.

>> It
>> seems to me that either approach is equally effective.
> Certainly, both have their pros and cons.
>> Yes, I think so.  At this point
>> http://wiki.tei-c.org/index.php/Council-licensing only includes things
>> produced by Council; jTEI is not produced by Council.
> Actually I listed jTEI on there, but in the full knowledge that
> it isn't probably under discussion.  However, I don't think we're
> only talking about things 'produced by council'...think, for
> example, of minutes of Board meetings or similar on the website.
> I think we're talking about "things produced by the TEI-C" but
> specifically exempting jTEI from that (except as a comparison or
> discussion point).

Oh yes, so it is!  I was going by the page title and the statement of 
scope at the top, which I have now revised.

> I would hope that the licensing conversation we are having would,
> in addition to re-licensing some of our existing
> software/materials/etc, produce a statement of licensing intent
> for the TEI-C to follow, where feasible, in the future.  I.e. if
> we decide on CC+BY for example, this would suggest that wherever
> feasible in the future the TEI-C should attempt to license its
> materials as such.  This gives freedom to change for specific
> commercial ventures (or whatever), but supplies an intent or
> policy that future generations of the Board and Council could
> strive to emulate.

Yes, this would be excellent.

(I haven't otherwise contributed to the licensing discussion because you 
all are covering the same concerns I would have brought up.  And I 
haven't been contributing to the licensing discussion because I haven't 
found the time to immerse myself in the document.  But I trust you to 
come up with the right decisions and leave me to the boring stuff no one 
else wants to do, like reconciling versions of Tite.)

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