[Foundation-l] GFDL and Relicensing
lars at aronsson.se
Thu Nov 22 20:46:29 UTC 2007
Tim 'avatar' Bartel wrote:
> of cases where people (in Germany) notice an '...or later'
> clause and sign a contract anyhow because they know, that this
> clause is ineffective.
German law applies *in Germany*, not *to Germans*. As soon as
they (or their works) move beyond borders, they are exposed to
other legal systems. (Go to China and kill someone -- you might
be sentenced to death.) So if the clause is ineffective under
German law, you can feel "safe" only as long as you (and your
work) stay in that country.
Suppose the WMF in the year 2057 decides to use your Wikipedia
articles in accordance with GFDL version 17. You're in Germany
and claim that you never legally agreed to this, and you sue WMF
for copyright infringement in a German court of law. That might
stop WMF from reusing your articles in this way in Germany, but it
doesn't stop WMF from reusing your articles in this way in Mexico.
If you're going to sue anybody for copyright infringement in
Mexico, you must find arguments that work under Mexican law.
The state of Bavaria claims they own Hitler's copyright, which
they confiscated in 1948, and sued a Swedish publisher of a
translated "Mein Kampf" (1992). But the Swedish supreme court in
1998 said a state cannot legally confiscate copyright for the
purpose of blocking publishing, since that would mean censorship,
and turned the case down. The book is sold in stores (part 1, ISBN
978-91-7123-100-0 and part 2, ISBN 978-91-7123-101-7).
Lars Aronsson (lars at aronsson.se)
Aronsson Datateknik - http://aronsson.se
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