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Re: DOM, Promises, and licensing

From: Jeff Jaffe <jeff@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 15 Jul 2013 10:32:40 -0400
Message-ID: <51E40808.5050700@w3.org>
To: Alex Russell <slightlyoff@google.com>
CC: Anne van Kesteren <annevk@annevk.nl>, "www-tag@w3.org List" <www-tag@w3.org>, Yehuda Katz <wycats@gmail.com>, Ian Jacobs <ij@w3.org>, Adrian Bateman <adrianba@microsoft.com>, Philippe Le Hegaret <plh@w3.org>, Chris Wilson <cwilso@google.com>, Tantek Çelik <tcelik@mozilla.com>
On 7/15/2013 6:43 AM, Alex Russell wrote:
> On Sun, Jul 14, 2013 at 3:48 AM, Jeff Jaffe <jeff@w3.org 
> <mailto:jeff@w3.org>> wrote:
>
>     On 7/13/2013 7:57 AM, Alex Russell wrote:
>>     On Fri, Jul 12, 2013 at 9:18 PM, Jeff Jaffe <jeff@w3.org
>>     <mailto:jeff@w3.org>> wrote:
>>
>>         On 7/12/2013 3:52 PM, Alex Russell wrote:
>>>         On Fri, Jul 12, 2013 at 7:24 PM, Jeff Jaffe <jeff@w3.org
>>>         <mailto:jeff@w3.org>> wrote:
>>>
>>>             On 7/12/2013 2:16 PM, Alex Russell wrote:
>>>>             I think this is all misdirection from the core question:
>>>>
>>>>             Jeff: did you express that view to Anne?
>>>
>>>             I'm not sure I understand which view you are talking
>>>             about.  I've certainly expressed the view that the W3C
>>>             Document License does not permit forking. Is that what
>>>             you are asking?
>>>
>>>
>>>         To quote Anne:
>>>
>>>         "...per your understanding of the W3C Member Agreement I
>>>         could not be a Member of the W3C WebApps WG, push snapshots
>>>         to TR/, while simultaneously edit
>>>         http://dom.spec.whatwg.org/ This generalizes to other
>>>         documents I work
>>>         on as I understand it."
>>>
>>>         This would have several follow-ons if it's accurate:
>>>
>>>          1. Why do you believe that the WHATWG document is a fork in
>>>             any way from the W3C document?
>>>
>>
>>         DOM was started prior to my joining W3C, but I'm told that
>>         DOM was originally done at W3C.  Assuming that is true, then
>>         the WHAT WG document is likely a fork, although I have not
>>         personally examined the spec.
>>
>>
>>     This is a question that can be answered by Anne and others. The
>>     commit history starts here:
>>
>>     https://github.com/whatwg/dom/commits?page=34
>>
>>     Thanks to Marcos for digging that up.
>>
>>     It does not appear to be a fork.
>>
>>     Either way, I think the request for exception would clear up this
>>     issue entirely, no?
>>
>>>          1. If it can be shown not to be, do you drop your objection
>>>             (assuming you do object)?
>>>
>>
>>         Well this is a complex question which is probably best left
>>         for advice from attorneys.
>>
>>
>>     Who should be cc'd to get that opinion? Can you please add them
>>     to this thread?
>>
>>         But let's accept your assumption that it can be shown not to
>>         be a fork.  As I understand it, even if the current version
>>         is not a fork, if a later version includes IP contributed by
>>         W3C Members then that later version might be a fork.
>>
>>
>>     How can that possibly be true? W3C members, as per the membership
>>     agreement, retain copyright (and all other rights) to the work
>>     they contribute. They can re-license those works in any way they
>>     see fit. The act of publishing a something under multiple
>>     licenses and in multiple forms no more creates a derivative work
>>     than using the same prop in two films does.
>>
>>>          1. Do you accept that if drafts are published at the WHATWG
>>>             first and are then copied into W3C documents that this
>>>             does not constitute any sort of "forking" or creation of
>>>             a derivative on the part of the member doing this?
>>>
>>         I don't think I agree; maybe I just don't understand.  If the
>>         WHATWG publishes a document and then it is copied into a W3C
>>         document that represents a fork of the WHATWG document. 
>>         Given the license used at WHATWG the forking is permitted,
>>         but it is still a fork.
>>
>>
>>     AFAICTS, this is either confused or wrong, depending on the scenario:
>>
>>      1. If the entire text of the contribution comes from the WHATWG
>>         draft, wholesale, and is published there first /by the same
>>         person who added it to the WHATWG draft/, the act of adding
>>         such text to a W3C draft is simply the act of re-licensing
>>         the bit of work /to/ the W3C.
>>      2. If someone /other than the original author/ does this, the
>>         W3C work is /derivative/ /of the WHATWG work /under the terms
>>         of the WHATWG's publication license. It's an open question as
>>         to wether or not this would be kosher by the terms of the
>>         WHATWG license.
>>      3. If the contribution is derivative of other work at WHATWG
>>         (but not W3C) and is imported to the W3C draft, we're back in
>>         scenario #2.
>>
>>     In no case is "forking" in the direction of W3C -> WHATWG
>>     implicated /so long as the contribution appears in a WHATWG draft
>>     first./
>>
>>>         The point you make about the W3C license might not even be
>>>         apropos depending on your responses to the above.
>>>
>>>>             And is it not based on an /opinion/ of the policies in
>>>>             effect with regards to derivitive works in this area?
>>>>             Is it really necessary to ask the AC to change the
>>>>             Team's opinion on this?
>>>
>>>             Again, don't understand. It is not an opinion that our
>>>             current license does not permit forking.
>>>
>>>
>>>         It is the opinion of W3C lawyers /*if/how Anne's actions
>>>         would constitute forking* /which is under discussion.
>>
>>         Sure, but Anne's note seems to say that he doesn't work on
>>         anything that does not permit forking - which - for better or
>>         for worse - is not possible in W3C until we get the new HTML
>>         Charter.  W3C lawyers cannot give an opinion that a fork is
>>         not a fork.
>>
>>
>>     It might be the case that you're talking past each other a bit.
>>     The proximate question is about the Promises text, written
>>     entirely by Anne, and which we want to import into the W3C draft.
>>     I think we all agree that liberalizing the W3C licenses is the
>>     right long-term fix, but there doesn't seem to be any need to cut
>>     that knot to make progress on this issue.
>>
>>     Can we please focus on that and not the larger question which, by
>>     all accounts, is likely to get solved soon?
>
>     Absolutely.
>
>     This is really a very confusing email from you.  To my previous
>     response you asked me a bunch of questions which I answered.  Then
>     you disagreed; asked several questions about them; then you said
>     that we should not focus on all of your questions and only focus
>     on this promixate question.
>
>
> I'm trying to understand the situation completely myself.
>
> That said, I think we should solve a couple of problems:
>
>  1. get Promises, as spec'd in the WHATWG draft, into the W3C DOM draft
>  2. ensure that Anne can edit DOM (if this is easy to solve, it's the
>     fastest path to #1)
>  3. figure out why we got into a state where he cannot or will not
>
>     In any case, I think that's a good idea so I'll focus on this
>     proximate question.  And if you want to get back to the larger
>     questions, I suggest a phone call because we are clearly talking
>     past each other.
>
>
> Perhaps.

OK.  Let me know.

>     I haven't seen the "Promises text", but I infer from what you
>     write that this is a specification that Anne has written 100% and
>     we want to import that into the W3C draft.  If I am understanding
>     correctly there are numerous trivial ways for that to happen.
>
>     1. Anne can contribute it to the Working Group.  (Above you seem
>     to  think that he can only do that if I assert some things about
>     the copyright of DOM which (a) might not be true and (b) which
>     Anne has not asked for.  In fact, none of that is necessary - he
>     can simply contribute it to the WG.)
>
>
> This is confusing. Perhaps Anne and I misunderstood: contributing 
> seems in this case simply to be re-licensing his work to the w3c. I 
> agree that this shouldn't be problematic in any way.
>
> The tactical issue here is who will add it to the W3C spec. And what's 
> the process for "contributing"?

What I meant here is that there is nothing that stops Anne from joining 
the Working Group as part of team-Mozilla and saying "here are a bunch 
of ideas that I think the WG should consider".  At that point, anyone 
who the WG designates as the editor can add it to the W3C spec.

Unless Anne does not want to do so.  In which case, there are solutions 2-4.

>     2. If Anne does not want to participate in the Working Group, but
>     gives permission for someone else to contribute it to the working
>     group, I believe that would be OK.
>
>     3. If Mozilla holds a copyright, then presumably anyone from
>     Mozilla can contribute it.
>
>     4. If it is published by the WHATWG, I believe that since they use
>     a liberal license that anyone is authorized to submit it to the
>     W3C.  I'm not sure I would be happy about doing that unless the
>     WHATWG community were OK with that solution, but I believe that
>     there are no legal barriers to that.
>
>
> Good to hear you're not opposed.
>
>>>>             Anne: can you make the formal request per the rule there?
>>>
>>     Still looking for a response to this.
>>
>>>>
>>>>             Jeff: assuming he does, can you please advise on a
>>>>             timeframe for getting a response?
>>>
>>     And this.
>>
>>>>             On Fri, Jul 12, 2013 at 7:08 PM, Jeff Jaffe
>>>>             <jeff@w3.org <mailto:jeff@w3.org>> wrote:
>>>>
>>>>                 On 7/12/2013 2:02 PM, Anne van Kesteren wrote:
>>>>
>>>>                     On Fri, Jul 12, 2013 at 1:46 PM, Jeff Jaffe
>>>>                     <jeff@w3.org <mailto:jeff@w3.org>> wrote:
>>>>
>>>>                         First, if Anne has a request, I would like
>>>>                         to hear his request.  I don't
>>>>                         want to hypothetically guess his request
>>>>                         and respond to all possible
>>>>                         interpretations.
>>>>
>>>>                     Alex asked why DOM in W3C was not updated. I
>>>>                     told him that per your
>>>>                     understanding of the W3C Member Agreement I
>>>>                     could not be a Member of
>>>>                     the W3C WebApps WG, push snapshots to TR/,
>>>>                     while simultaneously edit
>>>>                     http://dom.spec.whatwg.org/ This generalizes to
>>>>                     other documents I work
>>>>                     on as I understand it.
>>>>
>>>>                     I cannot speak for WHATWG (no space), but I
>>>>                     personally would not want
>>>>                     to edit anything that cannot be forked.
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>                 As we've discussed many times, at a personal level
>>>>                 I respect your decision not to work on documents
>>>>                 that cannot be forked, even though it disappoints
>>>>                 me from a W3C point of view.
>>>>
>>>>                 I've also said that over time I'm hopeful that we
>>>>                 get to a point that we have an evolved consensus in
>>>>                 this area.
>>>>
>>>>                 First step - still not a done deal - is the
>>>>                 revision of the HTML5 Charter and forking for
>>>>                 extension specifications.
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>                     --
>>>>                     http://annevankesteren.nl/
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>
>>>
>>
>>
>
>
Received on Monday, 15 July 2013 14:32:54 UTC

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