For Approval: TVA Open Source License

Tzeng, Nigel H. Nigel.Tzeng at
Fri Sep 11 18:50:56 UTC 2009

On 9/11/09 2:04 PM, "Carroll, James Ritchie" <jrcarrol at> wrote:

> Our counsel chose the more concise copyright statement since no
> copyright can be held by TVA and the NASA clause seems to
> insinuate some kind of copyright when in  fact there is none.

This is incorrect.  The USG can assert and hold copyright to software outside the US under 17 USC § 105 and a contractor can also transfer software copyrights to the TVA should it be required under contract.  That doesn't mean that the copyright automatically evaporates under 17 USC § 105.  I've been told that agencies have asserted international rights in the past.

This is ignoring the issue of copyright ownership for software developed under government contract by contractors.  This is true under DFARS (contractors hold copyright) but I do not know if it automatic under FAR.  Plus there are other rules for SIBR.

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