Re-licensing the wiki (without the non-commercial clause)

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Veyrdite
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Re: Re-licensing the wiki (without the non-commercial clause)

Postby Veyrdite » Wed Nov 18, 2015 6:05 am UTC

"Game guide" sites could copy+paste wiki content onto them for ad revenue if we drop NC. They would also try and get above the actual unvanquished wiki in search rankings whenever people web-search for unvanquished related information.
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kharnov
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Re: Re-licensing the wiki (without the non-commercial clause)

Postby kharnov » Wed Nov 18, 2015 6:29 am UTC

Do you really think an NC clause will stop a scummy site like that? I doubt they even notice there's a license half the time.
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Re: Re-licensing the wiki (without the non-commercial clause)

Postby Viech » Wed Nov 18, 2015 2:34 pm UTC

Some random things to consider:

  • If an external game guide is made for Unvanquished and someone manages to make any money with it, then we've done it and made Unvanquished a popular video game! If someone's going to use SEO to fool google then certainly they will disregard our licensing, too.
  • Articles on our game may want to make use of our documentation. That's also true for printed (and thus, commercial) magazines. I would speculate that the NC clause isn't even a problem here ("fair use") but some smaller sites may be afraid of using, for example, images that have it.
  • A printed magazine may even want to distribute a copy of our game, which has already happened. Is that a good thing? I think it is. Technically they disregarded the NC clause on my map but that's not why I added it. They're not financially exploiting our work, they're merely distributing our game for us.
  • It is legal to sell open source games, except for assets marked NC. However, anyone who buys such a game may resell or gift or upload it and needs to be able to acquire the source code of the (modified) game being sold. Hence, if you make money with this then you're basically charging for the greater good of stripping appstore users of their financial resources for the service of burning something on a disk.

All in all, I don't have a strong opinion on the wiki license. As a contributor, I'm fine with a change.
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Veyrdite
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Re: Re-licensing the wiki (without the non-commercial clause)

Postby Veyrdite » Sat Nov 21, 2015 3:15 am UTC

Viech wrote:[*]A printed magazine may even want to distribute a copy of our game, which has already happened. Is that a good thing? I think it is. Technically they disregarded the NC clause on my map but that's not why I added it. They're not financially exploiting our work, they're merely distributing our game for us.


Oh wow. Computer magazines in Australia have been dying off rather quickly.

[quote=Kharnov]
I recall Calinou didn't want the NC clause, as well as several others whose names escape me.
[/quote]

I'll need to get in contact with Calinou. We need to get the opinions of these people into the discussion.
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Re: Re-licensing the wiki (without the non-commercial clause)

Postby Calinou » Sun Nov 22, 2015 10:06 pm UTC

In this lengthy article, you can find some reasons of why I think non-commercial clauses are a bad idea. To quote it:

  • They make your work incompatible with a growing body of free content, even if you do want to allow derivative works or combinations.
  • They may rule out other basic and beneficial uses which you want to allow.
  • They support current, near-infinite copyright terms.
  • They are unlikely to increase the potential profit from your work, and a share-alike license serves the goal to protect your work from unethical exploitation equally well.
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Re: Re-licensing the wiki (without the non-commercial clause)

Postby illwieckz » Wed Dec 02, 2015 1:36 am UTC

I want to say many things but others already said them, like kharnov, Viech or Calinou, especially these sentences:

kharnov wrote:Do you really think an NC clause will stop a scummy site like that? I doubt they even notice there's a license half the time.

Viech wrote:If an external game guide is made for Unvanquished and someone manages to make any money with it, then we've done it and made Unvanquished a popular video game!

Calinou wrote:share-alike license serves the goal to protect your work from unethical exploitation equally well.


Licenses are for honest people only, it's how you say to honest people how they must work with you. Dishonest people don't care about license, and they don't want to work with you. If you want someone being fair with you, -SA clause fits the need. If someone wants to scam some people, he probably does not respect the -SA too. So, having complicated clauses only hamper honest people.

I've nothing against -SA clause even if I don't use it myself when I start a project, and it generally fits the need when you need to be “protective”, the -SA clause works well, it's the “fairness needed” clause everyone wants.

I don't like at all the -NC clause because its meaning is unclear. What is commercial ? I don't like complicated clauses with vague borders. I don't like -ND clause because it does not allow maintenance. So for wiki or for assets, the less -NC and the less -ND clause there is, the more I'm happy ! :-)

Also, this argument is just an opinion but the -NC clause means the moral authority is money, and I don't like that. I don't like when people think “whatever I do it's OK because I make no money with it” like if money is the god who has all the power to decide which is good and which is bad, and the -NC clause encourages this way of thinking. It's because I don't like how our commercial world is wrong I don't like the -NC clause : it's giving the power to that « commercial world » to decide what is good or not.

Also, using -NC or -ND clause just disqualifies the project on some media. For example that french website referencing open source games removed the Unvanquished article I wrote when they discovered that behind the official "Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5" announcement for assets (see COPYING.txt), some assets were not free, because they follow the Debian License Policy. Since the -NC and -ND clause are not recognized as free (and I'm OK with that), so whatever is done under a -NC or -ND clause looks a bit wasted, and that's a bit unfortunate.

And I just want to give you a good example, the Warsow project was shipping assets with proprietary licenses since a long time, but for the Warsow 2.0 release they decided to switch to CC-BY-SA because it's the better way to keep their project alive :

Vic wrote:Majority of Warsow assets are now under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 license. Setting the assets free ensures Warsow doesn't get stuck in proprietary limbo and will remain an important piece of indie gaming in the future too. Players and developers alike are encouraged to innovate with free assets, and contribute more media back to the game! Or just simply use them in their own games if they comfort the license.

Be free ! Be Open ! Be Alive ! PROprietary is solid as rock, like tombstones.
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Re: Re-licensing the wiki (without the non-commercial clause)

Postby velociostrich » Sun Dec 06, 2015 11:11 am UTC

Veyrdite wrote:With the engine code my understanding is that it's contributed to under 'Copyright Unvanquished Development'. Presumably this means the engine can be re-licensed by whoever shows they most officially represent 'Unvanquished Development', but how that is actually legally worked out (eg if the dev team splits or reduces) and under which country's laws is in the air as far as I know.

Because the engine is ultimately derived from the GPL code release of Quake 3, there's no changing the engine license without going through the same mess that the Darkplaces engine authors tried to go through. I don't think that there's any issues with the license for the engine, however. And it's GPL, so it's not like some of the code could be under one license and other code under another: it all has to be GPL.

Veyrdite wrote:
if each contributor owns copyright for each specific change made, the license could theoretically be changed and any changes made by contributors who don't agree or can't be reached could just be culled.

I'd prefer not to have to do this :P I expect that only a tiny subset of contributors will be contactable, hence the need of 'love and hope' that we wouldn't offend any previous contributors.

If necessary, I do still think that this would be possible without causing too much disruption. I took a look around and (upon casual observation) it appeared that most pages were edited by primarily one person. The most notable exception to this would be the compilation instructions page, which is full of hard-won information that would be hard to reproduce. That page could always get re-written (though I'm sure nobody would like that job) or an exemption could be made in a license change-over.

Viech wrote:Some random things to consider:
If an external game guide is made for Unvanquished and someone manages to make any money with it, then we've done it and made Unvanquished a popular video game! If someone's going to use SEO to fool google then certainly they will disregard our licensing, too.

This is a good point, and I think this also embodies the notion of "all press is good press;" ultimately the goal is to get more people playing Unvanquished (I think, anyway), so if people discover our game because of some sleazy site that copies the contents of our wiki, so be it.

Things really only get bad if sites slip malware into the installer or do other nasty things like that, but as I said before, scammers gonna scam, and like kharnov said, they're not going to stop because someone put a -NC clause on the license.

Also, just to be clear, I just don't want to be "that guy" who refuses the change and gets in the way of everyone else doing what they'd like to do; I'm not going to push for a license change if it's only a minority who wants it, but I don't want to impede progress, either.
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Re: Re-licensing the wiki (without the non-commercial clause)

Postby Veyrdite » Tue Dec 15, 2015 8:12 am UTC

I have not been around for a while due to full-time work. I probably won't be around much until I atleast settle in.

Routes I see:

1) Find all page authors, ask them if they are ok with a change. Change the whole wiki.
2) Run the wiki on two licences: all old pages retain their current, all new pages get put under a different default. Individual pages get moved to the new if the page authors are fine with it (which is easy for many/probably most pages).
3) Change the whole wiki.

Option (1) is beyond my means and even with everyone working on it we would have a massive task. Option 3 is a "don't consult at all". It feels like most people here are thinking of something between (1) and (3)?

Suddenly changing the whole wiki's licensing feels like an activity that will make some people happy and others unhappy. I have not been enjoying thinking about this task at all because I don't feel there is a right way to do this.

Option (2) is possible through many means. From a practical side: If we can't do this directly through Mediawiki or a plugin then we could disable the licensing info at the bottom of each page and add a licence template to each page.


Because the engine is ultimately derived from the GPL code release of Quake 3, there's no changing the engine license without going through the same mess that the Darkplaces engine authors tried to go through. I don't think that there's any issues with the license for the engine, however. And it's GPL, so it's not like some of the code could be under one license and other code under another: it all has to be GPL.

Sidenote: the engine has some BSD and ET-XreaL licensed parts.
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Re: Re-licensing the wiki (without the non-commercial clause)

Postby illwieckz » Fri Dec 18, 2015 3:42 am UTC

and ET-XreaL licensed parts


What is that?
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Re: Re-licensing the wiki (without the non-commercial clause)

Postby Veyrdite » Sun Dec 27, 2015 12:57 am UTC

illwieckz wrote:
and ET-XreaL licensed parts


What is that?


See https://github.com/Unvanquished/Unvanqu ... OPYING.txt

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