I’m not going to say it…

Unfortunately, I came down with the same flu that’s hit so many others. This and a nasty snow storm that just blew in are conspiring to keep me from my much needed walks and explorations, dammit. So I might as well work on the edits for Practical RDF, and some tech tweaks around here.

One tweak is, I upgraded to Movable Type 2.62. I had to re-apply my Trackback re-build customization, and one small change in the search template, but other than that, the upgrade went without a problem.

I hadn’t started playing with any of the new features yet, but did notice the button to add Creative Common licenses to your weblog. However, before you touch that button, you might want to read about the experiences of a MT user that Phil documented. It seems someone decided to play around with the license only to find out you can’t remove it from the page. There is no off switch. Currently, the only way to remove CC licenses in MT is to make a change in the database, and it sounds like the templates.

Big ouch, there. Sounds like Ben is working on the problem, but I wouldn’t play with pushing buttons now, until this fix is made.

However, there is a misunderstanding I do believe in the license interpretation. From what some of the legal beagles here abouts have said, if you apply a CC license on a work, and then withdraw it, this withdrawal doesn’t impact on people who have already used your work. However, the CC license will no longer apply to new uses of this work. At least, this is my understanding of what others have said.

(I wish I could remember who said this and where. This is one of those times when we need to be able to track a thread regardless of use of tracback and other technologies.)

Additionally, and legal people correct me if I’m wrong, in Phil’s comments, the person who had mistakenly applied the license stated:


It would have only granted an “irrevocable license” on any new material published while the CCL was still displayed. (The content published previously remains protected by its original copyright since it predates the CCL and cannot be covered by the CCL legal agreement.) Since no new content was published under the Creative Commons License while it was briefly displayed on the site, the license’s addition to the page and later removal is mute.


Sorry, but from what I hear, the CC license applies to whatever it’s attached to, regardless of date of material. Unless you specifically make annotations that the license is only effective on material dated after such and such a date, or only to the design of the site, or only to the writing, or only the images, that license applies to everything. And if you mix CC licenses and copyright on the same page, from what I’ve been told, the person can pick which license they choose to use your material under — so long copyright.

Copyright is copyright by default — if you want copyright, don’t touch that button!

Dammit, call me cranky from being sick and missing out on my walk, but the point I’ve been making is that the use of the license is too damn confusing for people who aren’t legal experts. I think adding CC license support into Movable Type is a mistake, pure and simple. This is a case of technology and law mixing to the detriment of both. Adding new toys, but new toys that can bite you on the butt.

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