[Discuss] Publish OSHW with CC0?

Andrew Katz Andrew.Katz at moorcrofts.com
Wed Nov 5 15:10:53 UTC 2014

Hi Andres

Sorry - I've seen my email on the list and MacMail comprehensively failed to handle the formatting. I'll top post from now on.

I've reposted it, hopefully with better formatting.

I'd agree that it would be tricky to introduce new IPRs unilaterally without breaching international treaties - not necessarily the IPR specific treaties like Berne Convention (which tend to set minimal levels of mutual protection, so tend to act as a ratchet towards ever increasing coverage), but possibly trade treaties which may regard the implementation of new IPRs as a form of protectionism. It's not something I've given much thought to (and, indeed, would not want anyone to give too much thought to as I'm dead set against the creation of new IPRs, even if there is a laudable aim).

I'd also worry about licences 'expanding' existing legislation. A properly functioning licensing regime can only, by definition, grant permissions under existing IPRs, it can't create any new IPRs (although there is an unfortunate possible side effect that granting 'licences' under non-existent IPRs might make a foolish judge declare that the non-existent IPR actually exists, otherwise no-one would have bothered to grant a licence under it). Copyleft is a cunning hack under existing rights, but it doesn't expand the law in any sense.

What additional legal help do you think the EFF might be able to provide? 

It's interesting that you're considering state administration of a system. Maybe (and it's a horrible idea, but maybe) all sales of hardware could be subject to a sales tax which is mitigated if the object is accompanied by appropriate design materials. I can't see it ever happening, but I throw it out there. That way there's no compulsion to provide the design files, but the transaction is cheaper if you do. 



> -----Original Message-----
> From: discuss-bounces at lists.oshwa.org [mailto:discuss-
> bounces at lists.oshwa.org] On Behalf Of Andrés Delgado
> Sent: 05 November 2014 14:46
> To: discuss at lists.oshwa.org
> Subject: Re: [Discuss] Publish OSHW with CC0?
> Andrew,
> Your last email was really hard to follow. Reading all this I think we should
> officialy ask for advice to the EFF.
> Do you think this is a good idea? Most of them are lawyers.
> Plus, also consider copyright laws are made not only within countries but with
> international trade agreements and it is also regulated by the WTO. Any
> specific country can't just create new laws ignoring the agreements they have
> signed, is it better to "expand" the existing legislation, just like licenses do.
> This also brings back the issue of an institution for the commons, as obligatory
> licenses/revenues right now can and probably will go to the State being the
> official representative of what's supposed to be.
> --
> Andrés
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