POV-Ray : Newsgroups : povray.general : copyright/trademark/patent license questions : Re: copyright/trademark/patent license questions Server Time
7 Dec 2021 16:55:18 EST (-0500)
  Re: copyright/trademark/patent license questions  
From: clipka
Date: 15 Nov 2013 03:14:55
Message: <5285d7ff@news.povray.org>
Am 15.11.2013 04:05, schrieb Paul Wise:

> Currently POV-Ray is copyright by Persistence of Vision Raytracer Pty. Ltd. and
> the code is licensed under the AGPLv3+, the docs are CC-BY-NC-SA-2.5 and the SDL
> includes, macros and sample scenes etc are CC-BY-SA-3.0. POV-Ray Ltd owns the
> trademarks 'POV-Ray', 'Persistence of Vision Ray Tracer', and 'POV-Team'. As far
> as I can tell there are no patent concerns.
>
> https://www.gnu.org/licenses/agpl-3.0.html
> https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.5/
> https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

PLEASE BE AWARE that the licenses used by POV-Ray 3.7 for the 
accompanying files differ on a file-by-file basis: While complex sample 
scenes are typically distributed under a CC BY-SA license, simple sample 
scenes are typically distributed under a CC BY license, and include 
files are typically distributed under a CC BY-ND license.

> I have some questions about that situation:

Chris Cason can provide more details about the situation, and can speak 
for POV-Ray Ltd, but as a contributor I might be able to shed a bit of 
light on your questions already.


> Will copyright assignment to POV-Ray Ltd be required for contributing to
> POV-Ray?
>
> Are there any other requirements for contributions to the new AGPLv3 POV-Ray?
>
> Is there a contributor agreement? Is there any guarantee that code contributions
> will remain under the AGPLv3+ or other FLOSS licenses?

When I joined the dev team some years ago there was indeed a contributor 
agreement to be signed. It required agreement that POV-Ray Ltd. could 
distribute my contributions under /both/ the old POV-Ray license /and/ 
the AGPL. The old POV-Ray license was still relevant back then, but the 
decision to move towards AGPL had already been made.

Chris took great pains to get the license transitions straight, 
contacting all the past contributors to get their ok for the license 
transition (to my knowledge this included all contributors, regardless 
of whether they had signed a contributor agreements or not); wherever 
the ok was denied, or could not be obtained for other reasons, care was 
taken to replace or remove the respective portions of the source code, 
scene files or whatever other portion of POV-Ray. If POV-Ray should ever 
undergo another licensing transition to an incompatible license, I would 
expect similar proceedings.


IANAL, but with POV-Ray now being placed under the AGPL, it appears to 
me that there is now another route available for contributions which 
does not require any signed agreement: Change the code, and distribute 
the changed code back to the dev team under the AGPL yourself; they can 
then freely use it as part of POV-Ray as long as POV-Ray remains under 
the AGPL.

> What are POV-Ray Ltd plans for license enforcement?

They sue your ass off if you don't comply :-)

Seriously, POV-Ray Ltd. has fought some lawsuits against license 
violators in the past (stuff like commercial products silently using 
POV-Ray as their rendering engine and hiding the fact) and thrown quite 
some money at them. I guess with the transition to AGPL they'd also 
happily call in airstrikes from the FSF.


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