License for a document or presentation?

Lawrence Rosen lrosen at
Wed Apr 14 15:50:21 UTC 2004


If all that is being taken from an original work are its underlying ideas,
then of course copyright doesn't matter.

But what if we want to encourage folks to make copies of works, or modify
them, or distribute them. Doesn't an open source license make it clear that
those things are doable without restriction? 


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Rod Dixon [mailto:Rod Dixon] 
> Sent: Friday, April 09, 2004 12:23 PM
> To: lrosen at; steve at; 
> license-discuss at
> Subject: RE: License for a document or presentation?
> I have often wondered whether the principles supporting 
> licensing documents differed from software, and these 
> comments provide me the opportunity to ask that question here. 
> Given that, unlike what is typical of software, access to the 
> underlying ideas in a document are as accessible as the 
> expression and that copyright infringement is not the same as 
> plagiarism, does the use of licenses to distribute text cut 
> against the goals of open source more than it supports it? 
> Compare, for example, the use of a book, newspaper, or 
> magazine article (as a copyrighted work) with software.  Are 
> we promoting the idea that all text should be licensed? Isn't 
> this the regretable trend that has captured all software? 
> When the ideas are freely accessible doesn't that reduce 
> (albeit, not eliminate) the benefit of using an open source license? 
> - Rod Dixon
> -----Original Message-----
> From:  Lawrence E. Rosen
> Date:  4/9/04 12:07 am
> To:  'Steve Thomas', 'License Discussion Open Source'
> Subj:  RE: License for a document or presentation?
> The Open Software License (OSL) and the Academic Free License 
> (AFL) work perfectly well for documentation. I usually use 
> the AFL for my documents and presentations, or the OSL if I 
> don't want anyone to make proprietary derivative works. 
> By the way, slide presentations are software, not that it 
> matters as far as the license is concerned. :-)
> /Larry Rosen
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Steve Thomas [mailto:steve at]
> > Sent: Thursday, April 08, 2004 10:52 AM
> > To: License Discussion Open Source
> > Subject: License for a document or presentation?
> > 
> > 
> > Is there an existing OS license that would fit licensing a slide
> > presentation to Open source?  I have a slide show I use for making 
> > presentations on Open Source around the country, and it 
> > occurs to me it 
> > should be Open Source!  But I don't know how to license it, 
> > since it's 
> > not a code.
> > 
> > =Steve=
> > --
> > license-discuss archive is at
> > 
> --
> license-discuss archive is at

license-discuss archive is at

More information about the License-discuss mailing list