Matthew Cockerill at BioMed Central blog has a new post on a benefit of Wikipedia’s migration to CC-BY-SA license. Cockerill points out that the move eliminates license incompatibility between Wikipedia and many OA journals. He hopes that this will lead to wikipedia articles with citations that visitors can follow to the freely available article. From blog post:
What this means in practice is that it is now straightforward, from a licensing perspective, for any organization whether commercial or non-commercial to create derivative works incorporating both open access research articles and Wikipedia content, and to distribute these combined works under the CC-BY-SA license.
Thanks to Gavin Baker at Open Access News for the link.
Lawrence Lessig, Professor of Law at Stanford Law School and founder of the school’s Center for Internet and Society, posts on what he calls “huge and important news” regarding free licenses. Highlighting yesterday’s ruling by the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in the United States, Lessig notes,
So for non-law geeks, this won’t seem important. But trust me, this is huge … In non-technical terms, the Court has held that free licenses such as the CC licenses set conditions (rather than covenants) on the use of copyrighted work. When you violate the condition, the license disappears, meaning you’re simply a copyright infringer. This is the theory of the GPL and all CC licenses. Put precisely, whether or not they are also contracts, they are copyright licenses which expire if you fail to abide by the terms of the license.
Also worth a read are the numerous comments following his post. Not surprisingly, folks offer a host of opinions on his observations, as well as commentary about the ruling itself. Ahhh … the joys of copyright!