Documentation Licensing

Gervase Markham gerv at
Wed May 5 20:13:07 UTC 2004

Matthew P. Barnson wrote:
> However, there is one provision of the GFDL not being met that, while not
> wanting to be a jerk about it, I'd prefer Bugzilla adhere to: leaving my
> copyright intact.  Right now, by removing my copyright (haven't looked in
> the CVS log to see who did it) and my name from the principal author list,
> Bugzilla's in violation of the GFDL.  

That was me. I confess I didn't consult the license before doing so - I 
assumed that the reason you were specifically named was that you were 
the current maintainer; when that stopped being true, I just moved your 
name to the more general credits list, and changed the attribution to 
reflect the fact that the documentation is now a team effort.

Here's another thought about requiring attribution through the license, 
actually. Let's assume you don't make any more changes to the docs. In 
five years time, they'll be unrecognisable from when you edited them - 
and yet your name would still appear as principal author. I'd say that 
wouldn't be right, or fair on all the people who'd done the in-between work.

Voluntary attribution gives us the flexibility to be sensible.

> I think that the only developers from whom we'll need to obtain consent to
> change the copyright are JustDave, Jake (can we do that with him on-duty?),
> Zach Lipton, and myself.  

I doubt that very much :-(. For a start, as Dave says, I've made 
significant changes. We need to look through the CVS checkin history, 
and perhaps Bugzilla, to see who has contributed. Relicensing anything 
is (sadly) not a simple process.


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