[okfn-discuss] Open Definition forges ahead - get involved!

Mike Linksvayer ml at gondwanaland.com
Wed Dec 19 01:43:29 UTC 2012

On Tue, Dec 18, 2012 at 3:11 PM, Aaron Wolf <wolftune at gmail.com> wrote:
> I, for one, think that the most important thing in all these considerations
> is to make sure that all copyleft focus is on the smallest number of
> licenses. Copyleft is great for freedom but causes incompatibilities. We
> need to focus on having a single acceptable winner for any copyleft license
> for any given medium. For software, that is clearly already the GPL, so
> nobody should ever try to push any copyleft license that is incompatible
> with the GPL. For other media, CC-BY-SA seems to be the winning copyleft
> choice. The use of any other copyleft license should be either compatible or
> should be for a medium where these other license do not apply well.

I agree, and moreso, there's overlap among these magister^wmedia.
Existing incompatibilities need to be chipped away at and new ones
prevented. Fortunately new copyleft licenses aren't often introduced
(and when they are, a big part of the "blame" can be put on
pre-existing communities for lack of vision -- open content as an
incompatible universe is the fault of open source, data of content,
hardware of source and content; so now hopefully more can be watching
out for this sort of thing). And that chipping away is happening, eg
just today it was announced that the next EUPL version will be more
compatible with GPL than previous; CC-BY-SA-4.0 will probably be more
compatible with some other copylefts, etc.

OD is primarily a venue for helping people develop and find fully open
licenses, which is a necessary (well I can image edge cases where not,
but ignore) baseline for compatibility. Secondarily the OKD
conformance process can encourage best practices, and compatibility is
certainly one of those. The OKD 1.2 draft explains the addition of no
restrictions not mentioned elsewhere in part as in the service of
compatibility. And note compatibility is not just a copyleft concern;
any condition can conceivably cause problems. I encourage all to point
out other opportunities to use OD to further compatibility and other
best practices beyond simple OKD conformance.


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