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From "Robert Burrell Donkin" <robertburrelldon...@gmail.com>
Subject Re: LICENSE/NOTICE/policies/ASF/law (Was: [jsieve] Any more TODO before 0.2 release?)
Date Thu, 19 Jun 2008 20:41:57 GMT
On Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 7:21 PM, Stefano Bagnara <apache@bago.org> wrote:
> Robert Burrell Donkin ha scritto:
>>
>> On Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 10:30 AM, Stefano Bagnara <apache@bago.org> wrote:
>>>
>>> My understanding of something that belongs to LICENSE ended up in NOTICE
>>> because Daniel Kulp and Me had different instructions or misunderstood
>>> Cliff
>>> "directives".
>>
>> cliff tends towards sublety (too long talking to lawyers, i think).
>> categorical directives aren't his style.
>
> That's why I used quotes, and "his style" is what created this ambiguity ;-)
> A directive would have created a certain result, this way people keep asking
> what we have to do, most project put all the licenses in the LICENSE file,
> but Daniel placed license references in the NOTICE and it seems Cliff
> approved that work ;-)

copyright law is rarely categorical: it's tough to come up with a good
general rule which can be blindly applied

AIUI policy is relatively flexible about placement but best practice
is to be encouraged

>>>>> You see I was in that thread too with many post about my opinions and
>>>>> doubt
>>>>> about mixing policies, legal requirements and personal preferences. I
>>>>> still
>>>>> have the same doubt I had before that thread.
>>>>> From my understand each one ended up keeping his previous opinion and
>>>>> we
>>>>> had
>>>>> no new board "rules" from that.
>>>>
>>>> the board of the ASF set very few rules: the legal-affairs committee
>>>> are charged with legal stuff with approval by the membership
>>>>
>>>>> I personally didn't reply to this:
>>>>> http://markmail.org/message/mrbob6xo7c42bqh3
>>>>> only because if it is true then I would resign from the PMC because I
>>>>> don't
>>>>> want to be liable for each commit made by others and we could skip the
>>>>> release vote process at all because our repository would be always
>>>>> releasable and we would need to vet each commit in RTC as a written
>>>>> rule
>>>>> by
>>>>> the board.
>>>>
>>>> the vote is to ensure that a release is official. this offers a
>>>> measure of protection to release managers under most reasonable legal
>>>> systems
>>>
>>> I agree. But this would be nonsense
>>
>> no: issuing a release is definitely an act of publication. in many
>> legal systems, this makes a big difference.
>
> Sorry.. maybe my poor english: "nonsense" was about the next sentence you
> quoted separately. Making a difference between what we have in svn and a
> release IMHO makes A LOT OF SENSE.
> In fact I'm telling that we should care of releases and not of svn, and if
> svn is an issue we should hide it (or part of it) to the world :-)
>
>>> if each PMC member is anyway responsible
>>> at any time for what is in SVN.
>>
>> depends on what you mean by responsible. the PMC is charged with
>> oversight by the board so this is one responibility.
>>
>> (perhaps you mean culpability)
>
> Maybe, sorry but even a dictionary does not help too much with this terms:
> in italian they often are synonymous.

culpability is about the apportioning of blame and so it typically
used in a negative sense. in this context, it finding of blame by the
legal system. responsibility is more about ethics, morality and duty.
one may be responsible for a deed but others may be found culpable in
law for it.

<snip>

>>> The ASF-ALv2 header tells people "see the NOTICE file distributed with
>>> this
>>> work": if you download a single file from svn there is no "work" (or
>>> there
>>> is no NOTICE in the "distribution").
>>
>> the document is the work. subversion is the distribution mechanism.
>> (and yes apache spent years working through this and other matters
>> with lawyers)
>
> Ok, so there is no NOTICE file within the work, because the work is the fiel
> that should be referred in the NOTICE file.
>
> If instead you create an archive and inside the archive you have both the
> "single file" and the NOTICE then there is a NOTICE file distributed with
> the work.
>
> Otherwise if the fact that a file in a folder of an http server (subversion
> is not different from it) and another NOTICE file is in a different folder
> means that it is "distributed with" the first file simply because it uses
> the same distribution mechanism and the same source then this would be a big
> issue, because if we have a GPL file in the same server every other file
> from the same server will be hit by the GPL virality: fortunately people
> (lawyers) already agreed that this is not the case.

the GPL specifically addresses aggregation in this particular fashion

>>> "apache asks that projects": who is "apache" in this sentence?
>>> Apache License? ASF members? ASF committers? ASF legal-affair? ASF board?
>>
>> apache is the apache software foundation
>>
>> i was just trying to explain the reasoning behind the policy (as i
>> understand it)
>
> Sorry but what I meant is that a foundation does not speak :-) so
> someone/somewhat have to speak in place of the foundation.
> Once I'll know who "asks that projects" I know who I have to talk with if I
> want him to ask something, or something different ;-)
>
>>>>> BTW I am only one more troll in the repeating NOTICE/LICENSE flame. I
>>>>> would
>>>>> simply like to have the board publish clear RULES about what ASF
>>>>> committers
>>>>> HAVE TO do regarding releases and svn, and what behaviour/solutions are
>>>>> policies to be defined by single PMCs. I would keep my opinion on what
>>>>> is
>>>>> legally required or not, but I would for sure follow the board
>>>>> requirements.
>>>>
>>>> apache believes in self-governing communities. this is why the board
>>>> does not impose rules from above. i've been involved in the legal side
>>>> at apache for several years now, and the sad truth of the matter is
>>>> that copyright and trademark law are not really suitable for a set of
>>>> simple rules to follow.
>>>
>>> Ok, but people take care to come here and tell what is wrong in our
>>> distribution, referring to what MUST BE done instead.
>>
>> i'm not sure i'd put it quite as strongly as that
>
> Sure, don't take me so "hard" as I seem: I just want to understand and I
> hate when I think I understood something and instead history keeps repeating
> with topics revamped over and over again.
> The *fact* is that most ASF committers do not understand this matter and
> most ASF committers do not even care for this while the *problem* is that
> there is too many committers spreading personal preferences as
> LAWS/RULES/POLICIES when they are not ;-)

energy is required to change and improve things.

>>> I'm am in the JAMES PMC, so, if people tell the JAME PMC what MUST be
>>> done
>>> then I think there is something above the JAMES PMC: either it is some
>>> law
>>> for some jurisdiction I should care about or it is some entity in the
>>> ASF:
>>> if it is not the board then the board itself should tell us what is the
>>> entity entitled in telling us what we MUST do.
>>>
>>> BTW we know there is some "ASF wide"-policy: who define it, where are
>>> written and what is the process to discuss changes or disambiguate
>>> issues?
>>> Either the board define them, or there is a community/members process in
>>> place.
>>
>> members appoints and oversees the board. the board appoints committees
>> from the membership to deal day to day with some matters. in this
>> case, the policy is set by infrastructure and legal-affairs
>> committers. changing policy means lobbying these committees who will
>> then consider proposals and take them to the membership. i'm a member
>> and on the legal-affairs committee but IIRC i haven't spoken with that
>> hat on in this forum.
>
> THANK YOU! This is a first step.
>
> here: http://www.apache.org/foundation/ i see:
> "V.P., Legal Affairs    Sam Ruby"
> On www.apache.org I cannot find who are "committers" for "infrastructure"
> and "legal-affairs", but at least I have a "V.P."..

there committees lack public documentation

> In this page: http://people.apache.org/~jim/committers.html
> I find "legal" and "infrastructure" groups.

there are permission groups not committers

<snip>

> No references to "Legal Affairs" or "Infrastructure" :-(
>
> The whole bylaws document do not reference "Legal Affairs" or
> "Infrastructure" :-(

committees are created by the board

> Reading that stuff I was convinced there was the Board and the project PMCs,
> that's why I kept talking about JAMES PMC and the Board and no one else! ...
> I understand from your words that there is much more than what I read on
> apache website... and I'm interested in learning it.

IIRC there is some more information in the committers repository

- robert

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