[Discuss] New Blog Post Up!

Andrew Katz Andrew.Katz at moorcrofts.com
Thu May 22 08:17:35 UTC 2014

Hi All

Unfortunately, using any CC license with hardware is problematic: all of the licenses, including CC0, expressly state that they grant no patent rights. Therefore, someone who is a patent holder who licenses hardware designs under any CC license can still control implementation of the design in contravention of the open source hardware definition, through exercising patent rights.

This is an issue that has been recognised in the open source software world, and is a significant reason why none of the creative commons licences is accepted as an open source software licence by the OSI.  All open source software licences either contain explicit or (arguably) implied patent licences. No open source software licence expressly excludes patents from its grant for this reason. (The FSF is not quite so clear on this point – so I’ve put out a few feelers to find out why).

I’m not dissing the CC suite of licences – they are great for many types of content – but they are less great for hardware (and, for that matter, software), which is why I recommend solderpad, cern or tapr as your licence of choice for hardware, depending on what you are seeking to do.



From: discuss-bounces at lists.oshwa.org [mailto:discuss-bounces at lists.oshwa.org] On Behalf Of alicia
Sent: 21 May 2014 22:33
To: The Open Source Hardware Association Discussion List
Subject: [Discuss] New Blog Post Up!

New Blog Post on OSHWA to clarify which  Creative Commons licenses are compatible with open source:

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