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LRC Blog

February 21, 2007

Jonathan Slocum

Republishing LRC Website Content

N.B. The email exchange below may have been edited, e.g. to remove content not essential to the main point(s) or to standardize English spelling/grammar.

Question

Can you place GNU permission for copying your Pokorny Lexicon... at the same place... to enable copying and redistributing it under GNU GPL...?

M. B.

Answer

I am sorry, but there are two problems that prevent me from giving you permission to republish our Pokorny web page:

  1. I consider this page to be a "work in progress" -- it is not yet complete -- and I do not wish others to publish my incomplete work. I may revise it at any time, and I do not want older copies to remain online after an update.
  2. The copyright belongs to my employer, The University of Texas -- and therefore the State of Texas -- and not to me personally; therefore I cannot yield copyright under any circumstances. The University of Texas would have to make this offer to you, and that would require consulting with lawyers who might take a very long time to render an opinion. (They would probably say "No," in any case.)

Therefore my answer must, for the time being, be "No, you may NOT copy or republish our content under the GNU GPL."

Since the page/content you refer to will remain online, for many years into the future, there is no reason why you or anyone should reproduce it. University of Texas web servers are highly reliable and always available -- probably more so than your own website! All you need to do, to make this content available to your website visitors, is put a link to my page from your own page. That is the beauty of the World Wide Web.

If the University of Texas web servers were often down, I might be more sympathetic (although reasons #1 and #2 above would still apply). But there is no reason to copy content from a site with essentially 100% availability and very strong backup procedures.

J. S.