[Tango-artists] Terms Of Use: Who is "the author"?

Rodney Dawes dobey at novell.com
Fri Mar 3 05:49:43 PST 2006

On Fri, 2006-03-03 at 14:04 +0100, Linimair Simon wrote:
> Dear Tango-Artists,
> In the first mail I sent, I forgot to specify a subject, so I decided
> to post my message again:
> I would like to use your wonderful icons in a commercial closed-source 
> application. According to the licence-text 
> (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5/), I will have to
> "attribute the work in the manner specified by the author or licensor", 
> but I'm not sure who actually is the author or the licensor.
> In fact I'm looking for a FAQ-Entry like 
> "How can I use the Tango-Icon-Set in my application?"
> Thanks in advance for your answers.

I would recommend holding out a bit to include the icons in a
proprietary application that you have to provide support for. A
number of people in the Open Source world have brought up several
issues with the licensing, that we will be bringing up for review.
One of the possible solutions to these issues, is to change the
licensing to something more flexible for those parties.

If we do change the license, this means that the attribution
would need to change. Also, I am not sure that you can include
Cc-by-SA icons embedded in the binary as resources, which I presume
you are asking as well, given that this is common practice. This is
due to the derivitive works clause in the license. I am not a lawyer,
but I believe that including the images as resources in a program
would constitute a derivitive work. This at least seems to be the
case for icons under the GPL, which has a similar derivitive works
clause, requiring all derivitives to be GPL as well.

So, my advice would be wait it out until we get a reply from the
lawyers on the licensing issues that we are bringing to them. But,
if you want to go ahead and include the icons now, I think to
satisfy the attribution requirement you need to:

  - State that the icons are from the Tango Desktop Project
  - Provide a link to the http://tango-project.org/ site
  - State that the icons are under the CC-by-SA 2.5 license
  - Provide a copy of the CC-by-SA 2.5 license text

You don't need to list all authors and contributors to the project
individually as Jakub suggested. Stating the project itself and
providing a link should be sufficient. I will add a note to ask
legal about defining derivitive works more clearly, and how they
expect attribution should occur. Thanks for the support!

-- dobey

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