Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-project (280 mails)

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Re: [opensuse-project] License and copyright issues that openSUSE Weekly News team are coming up against now
  • From: Satoru Matsumoto <helios_reds@xxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 11 Feb 2011 23:35:25 +0900
  • Message-id: <>
Hi Alan,

Alan Clark wrote:

1. License of the contents on * sites

ATM, the contents on Wiki (en.o.o and other $LANG.o.o) are
published under GFDL 1.2 'unless expressly indicated otherwise'.
However, the license for contents on other * isn't
defined (we can only see the description '© 2010 Novell, Inc. All
rights reserved.' in footer area on most of the *

The GFDL terms apply to everything at See

That WAS the point. Since we can read the description 'With the
exception of Software, all content on *this website* is made available
under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License version 1.2
("GFDL") unless expressly otherwise indicated.' at , we asked Jürgen Weigert
"What does 'this website' refer to? Whole * (including
news.o.o, lizards.o.o, build.o.o and so on)? Or, just only en.o.o?"
before, and Sascha told me that he got an answer from him which said
"'this site' just means wiki." (I myself didn't get the answer, though).

Thanks to your answer, we can understand much clearer than before.

2. Which country's copyright law and guidelines should we refer
to, when we want to draw contents from external sites for OWN?

Copyright law worldwide is remarkably uniform, and on most "free
use" issues, the same result is achieved. If you're trying to make a
use case that's so close to the line that it's legal in, say,
England, but not legal in, say, the United States, you're cutting it
way too close to the line. Better to just have a good understanding
of general free use principles that are universal and stick to those.

Thanks to your comment again here. But I'm still confused. Things are
not that easy.

Essentially, "No international copyright law exists (...)"

And we can refer to various copyright laws from:

But for example, Japanese law has an article on 'Quotations' [1], while
US law has article on 'Fair use' [2] instead of 'Quotations'.

According to US law, people may 'fair use' contents from other sites
under certain conditions. I think that's why some news sites (for
example, linux today [3], LXer [4], [5]) can
introduce articles from other sites with some paragraphs of citation.

But I could find the explanation: "Fair Use - The fair use defense to
copyright infringement under §107 of US copyright law is much broader
than international fair use provisions. International fair use
exemptions tend to be more specific in nature." [6]. So, if I refer to
Japanese law and guidelines, current quotation style of OWN is not

As far as I know, the borderline between legitimate 'Quotations' or
'Fair Use' and illegal ones may vary among countries and we don't have
any universal standard.

That's why I have to ask, "Which country's copyright law and guidelines
should we refer to, when we act as a part of openSUSE project?"

If the answer is "Refer to US law" for example, the sitiation would be
much simpler.

# Refer to Article 32.


_/_/ Satoru Matsumoto - openSUSE Member - Japan _/_/
_/_/ Marketing/Weekly News/openFATE Screening Team _/_/
_/_/ mail: / irc: HeliosReds _/_/
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