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Revision as of 15:51, 11 December 2014

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Need definition for "Unstable" as you know or understand it

Thoughts, anyone? Anyone at all that isn't a machine?

User:TruthWorldOrder Edits

For what it's worth, I agree with User:Mormegil and his recent revert. I don't understand what problem the edits in question are trying to solve. Perhaps if they are explained them here, we can talk about it. —mako 19:41, 26 September 2011 (EDT)

Suppressing copyleft

In re’s I am trying to delist GFDL, GPL, LGPL, CC-BY-SA and other copyleft licenses: While I can understand (and, for a part, agree with) the opinion that copyleft licenses are not “free”, I have to point out that this would be an extreme change of the definition. Note that this definition originates at Wikipedia/Wikimedia Foundation, which use copyleft licenses extensively (the whole body of Wikipedia text is licensed under CC-BY-SA, for start), and which use the Definition as the criterion of acceptability. Changing the Definition so as to exclude copyleft would mean the whole Wikipedia contents would be against its own rules.

I just can’t imagine the definition could change so radically (without becoming a completely different definition). An alternate definition is possible, but would be exactly that – alternate, not just a new version of this.

--Mormegil 09:48, 17 October 2011 (EDT)

I'd think that CC-BY-SA and LGPL may be free, but GFDL and GPL are obviously non-free. Because you can include CC-BY-SA or LGPL works as part of works distributed under other licenses, but you cannot do the same thing with GPL and GFDL works. This is also why Wikipedia has moved from GFDL to GFDL + CC-BY-SA. Section 5 "Combining Documents" of the GFDL:

You may combine the Document with other documents released under this License, under the terms defined in section 4 above for modified versions, provided that you include in the combination all of the Invariant Sections of all of the original documents, unmodified, and list them all as Invariant Sections of your combined work in its license notice, and that you preserve all their Warranty Disclaimers.
The combined work need only contain one copy of this License, and multiple identical Invariant Sections may be replaced with a single copy. If there are multiple Invariant Sections with the same name but different contents, make the title of each such section unique by adding at the end of it, in parentheses, the name of the original author or publisher of that section if known, or else a unique number. Make the same adjustment to the section titles in the list of Invariant Sections in the license notice of the combined work.
In the combination, you must combine any sections Entitled "History" in the various original documents, forming one section Entitled "History"; likewise combine any sections Entitled "Acknowledgements", and any sections Entitled "Dedications". You must delete all sections Entitled "Endorsements". 07:56, 31 October 2011 (EDT)

Maybe I don’t understand your specific point, but AFAICT you cannot generally combine a CC-BY-SA work with a work under an other license, or, more specifically, when you combine a CC-BY-SA work with another work, the result must be licensed under CC-BY-SA as well. That is the same copyleft as in GFDL/GPL. On the other hand, LGPL allows you to combine an LGPL work (usually, a library) with another work (usually, an application), and distribute the result under any license. You cannot do that with CC-BY-SA, that is what the “share-alike” (-SA) tag is all about. On the other hand, CC-BY is a non-copyleft license which would allow that (but it is not the license Wikipedia uses). --Mormegil 11:52, 1 November 2011 (EDT)
True, GPL might allow less freedoms than for instance the MIT license. However that does not necesserily make GPL a non-free license. If you define a free license as the license with the most freedoms, then even the MIT/BSD/... licenses would have to be considered non-free, then only public domain could be considered truly free. However as there already is a definition for the public domain, the whole project of "Definition of Free Cultural Works" would not make sense then. Of course, the problem remains as of how broad you would want the Definition of Free Cultural Works to be. But from looking at the previous versions, the idea and intention of Definition of Free Cultural Works seems to have been to cover copyleft licenses as well, as they do not harm the main idea and purpose of Free Content. As Mormegil said before, excluding copyleft licenses is a completely different definition. Maybe you are more looking for instead? --T X 14:36, 1 November 2011 (EDT)

Definition of "Can" missing

"Free Cultural Works are works which anyone can use, study, copy, change and improve..." -> Tribes in a lot of countries don't have computers - and therefore can't use the MIT/GPL/... licensed software I wrote. So my work is not a Free Cultural Work? (I guess such a conclusion is not intended)

Maybe a definition for certain words, like "can", "may", ... should be added. Similiarly as keywords were specified for IETF's Internet Standards / RFCs ( --T X 13:37, 1 November 2011 (EDT)

In a similar vein, "should" is used a lot where some might argue for "must" (see ) (idea from). - K 17:48, 12 December 2011 (EST)

Merging 4 freedoms to 3, explicitly adding 'Distribution'

Free Cultural Works are works which anyone can

  • Use
  • Study
  • Copy
  • Change and Improve

I'm having two points I do not quite like about these four freedoms:

  • 'Study' is a form of 'Use': It's just a more specific form of usage - which, agreed, a lot of EULAs and laws try to exclude.
  • 'Distribution' should be added: If you were only looking at these four freedoms, even some content which you get via an NDA might fit these points. You can use, study and even copy the work for your own needs, you may change and improve it - however you won't be allowed to share any of these things afterwards.

Therefore my suggestion, making more a whole trinity with each point of the trinity being a duality:

  • Use and Study
  • Copy and Distribute
  • Change and Improve

So that the second verb of each freedom is actually a more specific form of the first verb of each freedom. The purpose of the second verb is to better reflect the true, good intent of the more neutral, more generic action defined in the first verb of a freedom, and to place some emphasize on this good intent, the idea behind it.

(I'm not quite sure whether I'd prefer the word 'distribute' or 'share'. Maybe a native English speaker could give some insight on what (s)he thinks the differing connotations might be.) --T X 04:25, 4 November 2011 (EDT)

The libre knowledge definition puts it this way:

Users of libre knowledge are free to

(0) use the work for any purpose
(1) study its mechanisms, to be able to modify and adapt it to their own needs
(2) make and distribute copies, in whole or in part
(3) enhance and/or extend the work and share the result.
i.e. "study" is about being able to adapt/modify - use (0) and adapt (1) to help yourself, "copy" (2) is about sharing to help your neighbour, and the last freedom (3) is to clarify that you can also share your modified versions (to help the community).
Personally, I prefer to retain the link with the free software definition as does the libre knowledge definition. Knowledge and cultural resources cannot be regarded as free if they cannot be accessed and modified with libre software. Consistency is important. - K 18:12, 12 December 2011 (EST)


Please make it clear that this would also be the "libre cultural works" definition.

The libre knowledge definition is completely compatible as far as I can tell. It appears in some form on the following pages: Declaration on libre knowledge, Libre knowledge on Wikipedia and Say libre. i.e. at some key point state that free means "libre"/"free as in freedom" - perhaps as simply as writing free/libre at least once near the beginning. - K 18:37, 3 March 2012 (EST)
I have created a parallel "libre" version - Libre Cultural Works Definition - but would prefer this not to be necessary. Discuss this issue right here or on the libre version's discussion page - Thanks - K 18:39, 5 March 2012 (EST)
I find the gratis meaning of "free" to be very confusing to newcomers and am in favor of reworking the text to use "libre" or another unambigious adjective. Cov 19:18, 2 May 2013 (EDT)

Free-Libre-Open Hardware Definition

Hello, I'm starting a "friendly fork" of the OSHW Definition here because, currently engaged in writing a free/libre/open hardware project proposal to a set of potential clients who are not at all familiar with the whole genre of free/libre/open approaches, I feel the current OSHW Definition is not concise enough to just reproduce as an excerpt. I also feel the current OSHW Definition risks the same division between "open source" methods and "free" ethics that has complicated relations for years within the free/libre/open source software community.

Back in 2004 while preparing a presentation deck for my Director General in government, I needed to cram the OSI definition into a single screen: In the end I felt the short version I had adapted was more useful as a definition than the original, in the same sense that dictionaries also hold to very concise phrases. Over the years too, I came to see the importance of including both the methods and ethics elements into projects.

So what appears here as a "fork" to facilitate discussion is the current draft text that appears in my own free/libre/open hardware document.


I hope nobody is offended by this thorough change. Putting it up as a fork here just seemed to best way to discuss it without interfering with your main definition text.


Joseph Potvin

Updating and creating a stable version.

Hello, my name is Michelle Kosik, I'm new to this so please excuse my inexperience. I was hopping we can make the font bigger or bolder. How do I change the version to the stable vershion?

You don’t just change the stable version. See Authoring process for more information. --Mormegil (talk) 05:18, 26 March 2013 (EDT)