[Foundation-l] GFDL and relicensing

Mike Godwin mnemonic at gmail.com
Thu Nov 22 15:51:27 UTC 2007

Thomas Dalton writes:

>  It only takes one for it to be immoral to take advantage of their
> ignorance. "Don't be evil" and all that.


>  It's that last sentence which concerns me. There is a difference
> between something being illegal, and it getting you sent to jail or
> sued. I, for one, am not comfortable with relying on people's apathy
> to get away with breaking the law, however safe it may be.

If you're saying there's such a thing as being "illegal" but not  
resulting potentially in a criminal or civil penalty, then you're  
using "illegal" in a way that it is not normally used.

As for "immoral,"  Thomas also writes:

> The fact that
> Mike is suggesting we would need to give people the option of opting
> out implies there is a legal issue involved in invoking the clause.

I am primarily suggesting the opt-out option because I believe it's  
the moral thing to do.  The fact is, I don't think there's much legal  
risk associated with even the most high-handed implementation of the  
migration, but I expect us not to be high-handed and instead to  
accommodate all reasonable complaints from contributors, up to and  
including removal of identifiable content they've generated under  
older GFDL expectations.

(So far as the question of whether French and German users would no  
longer be able to reuse Wikipedia content, I cannot imagine how a  
license migration of the sort we're talking about here -- a  
harmonization of  GFDL and CC-BY-SA -- could possibly lead to such a  
result. The endpoint license would unquestionably allow for reuse in  
France or Germany or anywhere else.)

--Mike (still trying not to be evil)

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