July 22, 2011

Shuttleworth: The Responsibilities of Ownership

Mark Shuttleworth's push for copyright assignment agreements takes an interesting turn with this lengthy post suggesting that contributors owe a project their copyrights since they are dumping a maintenance load on that project. "So, one of the reasons I'm happy to donate (fully and irreversibly) a patch to a maintainer, and why Canonical generally does assign patches to upstreams who ask for it, is that I think the rights and responsibilities of ownership should be matched. If I want someone else to handle the work - the responsibility - of maintenance, then I'm quite happy for them to carry the rights as well. That only seems balanced. In the common case, that maintenance turns out to be as much work as the original crafting of the patch, and frankly, it's the 'boring work' part, while the fun part was solving the problem immediately at hand."

Read more at LWN
Click Here!