• The forum software that supports hummy.tv has been upgraded to XenForo 2.1!

    This upgrade brings a number of improvements including the ability to bookmark posts to come back to later. Please bear with us as we continue to tweak things and open a new thread for any questions, issues or suggestions in Site/Forum Issues.

Forum, Wiki, and Custom Firmware Licensing

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
The recent stupidity nonetheless raised what could be an important issue: AFAIK, I don't think we have ever explicitly stated what we will and will not allow all and sundry to do with our IP (intellectual property).

Clearly, we generate forum posts and wiki articles for the common good, but in full knowledge that the stuff is "out there" and will be plagiarised to their hearts content; the CF is similarly "out there", but requires a little more skill and dedication to make anything of. We have practically no control over what happens to it all thereafter, but I think a statement of values would at least inform potential plagiarisers where they cross the line between fair use and unacceptable use.

I am no expert on licensing models. I've had a quick skim of GPL, Creative Commons, Share Alike etc, but found it (on brief reading) confusing and unnecessarily convoluted for our purposes. Maybe we can adopt an existing licence model, or perhaps we have to develop our own (or is this all shutting the stable door?).

These are the principles I (personally) think would be acceptable (subject to changing my mind in discussion):
  • Unrestricted for personal use including adaptation;
  • No commercial use of any kind (which could risk upsetting Humax even if not us!), including inclusion of any copyrightable element or subsection, except by the originator (maybe);
  • All publication to be via this forum and associated vehicles, or if elsewhere must be referenced on this forum, with full attribution of sources for any non-original content;
  • All voluntary gifts of appreciation shall be for the purpose of supporting the upkeep of this forum and associated infrastructure only. Any surplus may be distributed as beer money by af123 at his sole discretion, including (and especially) to himself.
Anything else?
 
Last edited:

EEPhil

Number 28
I would agree with that.
The one item I've created (so far) is, jokingly, licensed under the beerware license.
The problem is, I've written stuff in Java - which is very easy to reverse engineer. Therefore some common thoughts on reverse engineering could be useful. (For research purposes only, not for creating a commercial tool etc.). I could use an obfuscation tool - but that makes it difficult for me to debug the thing!
 

peterworks

Ye Olde Bowler
What about a 'distributed as is' ? As there is no 'official' support (just the good hearted/good nature of the creators/forum members), the support side should be 'expectation' controlled.
 
OP
Black Hole

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
Does that belong in licensing? I agree with the point, just not sure whether this subject extends to warranty.
 
OP
Black Hole

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
How? Personal use isn't commercial use - how have you used it commercially? Or are you having a quip about removal of commercials?
 

MymsMan

Ad detector
All publication to be via this forum and associated vehicles, or if elsewhere must be referenced on this forum.
Some packages are also on GitHub which makes them available to others

I am not sure writing our own licence is a good idea or necessary, although complex there are reasons that reasons that legal documents are written the way they are!
If anyone breaks the terms of our licence are we going to go to court to try to enforce it, where lawyers would argue over every word to prove black is white.

Sooner or (hopefully) later the Humax will reach the end of its life and users will want to migrate our functionality into new systems.
Parts of detectads started out as part of MythTV and I would hope that ad detection will live on into the future
 

EEPhil

Number 28
are we going to go to court to try to enforce it, where lawyers would argue over every word
at great expense,
to prove black is white
Douglas Adams - Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy said:
and get[s himself] killed on the next zebra crossing.
You are probably right. We are not going to go to court.
but I think a statement of values would at least inform potential plagiarisers where they cross the line between fair use and unacceptable use.
Probably a wise move, but we have no sanctions if they ignore it.
 
OP
Black Hole

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
Do you define this as commercial?
I think I would define commercial use as gaining financial benefit by plagiarism, ie passing off as one's own work or without attribution and appropriate sharing of benefit.

Use in a commercial environment (non-domestic is not exclusively commercial) is not the same as commercial use as defined above, and (depending on the situation) may not pass muster anyway (quality assurance etc). On your own head be it!

Receiving payment in return for the effort required to install and configure CF as-is, seems entirely reasonable.
 
OP
Black Hole

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
I am not sure writing our own licence is a good idea or necessary, although complex there are reasons that reasons that legal documents are written the way they are!
What I am talking about here is a statement of principles rather than a document that would stand up to scrutiny. As said, we have no sanctions, but I think in general people are happy to play fair so long as they know what "fair" means.

@af123 is noticeably quiet on this - he has more at stake than anyone else (I should think). What say you?
 

EEPhil

Number 28
I think BH has already said it, but "fair" to me would be similar to what researchers in the academic environment are supposed to do. If you use someone else's work, acknowledge it. If you use someone else's words, cite the original. What you don't do is reverse engineer, repackage the software as your own work and either sell it or claim kudos for having created it.
 
Top