To host your project on TuxFamily, a free license is required. You can choose between:
- GPL for code (or BSD if you prefer), GFDL for documentation
- CC-BY-SA or the Art Libre License for documentation, texts, wiki or blog, or artworks such as drawing, pictures, movies, music...
- GPL and Art Libre license are fine for artworks created with Blender or Inkscape (or any other libre software to edit images, videos, music...) as they incite to provide the original source rather than only having a png file or a video that cannot easily be modified. It permits easily to include them in libre games under GPL as it keeps a good of homogeneity.
We do accept other open licenses, feel free to join our irc channel if you have questions about a specific license.
In any case, you have to choose the license at the very beginning of your project! It is quite hard to change a license once your project is started, because you have to make sure that each contributor agrees with the new license chosen.
You can look at these links for information about the GNU GPL license:
- GNU site
- List of free licenses you can use
- Debian recommendations for formatting your license : https://www.debian.org/doc/packaging-manuals/copyright-format/1.0/
Why a free license?
Some reasons to choose a free (as in speech) license (this list is non-exhaustive!)
- If you do not choose a license, the copyright applies stricto sensu, which prevents
- redistribution (hence sharing and re-use)
- capacity to modify what you publish (hence, indirectly, re-use)
- Choosing a license enables you to grant some supplementary rights, regarding copyright
- a libre license is based on copyright: you remain the author of what you create and publish
- a copyleft license (GPL, CC-by-sa, Art Libre) requires that derived work keep the same license
- GPL and Art Libre identify a preferred form for modifications (source), benefiting from the same tools than the developer to create derived works, keeping the same quality
An example of a non-free license: Creative Commons Non-commercial / non-derivative (either one, or combined) Let's use the example of a film by a organization licensed under the CC BY-NC-ND license. They might have licensed it under the NC-ND combinations because they were worried that they wouldn't be able to say anything about the use of their film. However, this is not true.
As such, if you put a film, for example, under the NC license, other people won't be able to:
- sell your film on a CD without your permission, in a magazine for example
- let mirrors with advertising space distribute your film without your permission
- put your film on TV or websites or a cinema with commercials, which marginalizes your film outside circuits with large audience
- have your film shown in a LAN party or a movie-party that would require people to pay (as they would be essentially selling the film)
Those are only examples to show that NC is detrimental to the diffusion of your production, which is then marginalized because of your choice of NC. Without NC, you potentially have access to a wider distribution, without having to do anything. The main problem with NC is that it prevents uses that you would have found legitimate, wouldn't you?
ND, by default prevents the following:
- adding another teaser
- adding subtitles (spanish, french...)
- conversion in a readable or reduced format, for PocketPC for example
- reorganization of the scenes, to suppress scenes reserved to certain public
- copy of an image of the film to make a poster
IMHO, removing NC and ND does not mean you lose the ability to control the usage of your production: you should check with a lawyer to identify how to use patrimonial / moral and image rights and how they can be used as a counterpart to a CC-by-sa license.
Links to go further
- http://www.fsf.org/quick-guide-gplv3-announcement GPLv3 compatible with more licenses
- http://news.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=09/02/26/2249252 Creative Commons NoRightsReserved license or how to put something in the public domain as much as possible (interesting discussions)
License of this document
You can add examples to this document and use this text under the quadruple license, at your choice :