Who owns the code produced by student developers?

Threads related to Google Summer of Code
Post Reply
Bananmos
Gnoblar
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue Jan 23, 2007 8:36 pm

Who owns the code produced by student developers?

Post by Bananmos » Wed Mar 21, 2007 6:30 pm

It seems the answer to this question:

http://code.google.com/support/bin/answ ... opic=10728

...is left open for the mentoring organization to decide on. So I'd like to ask what Ogre's terms are? Is the student free to license the code under an alternative license in addition to the LGPL?
0 x

buddy
Google Summer of Code Student
Google Summer of Code Student
Posts: 78
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2005 3:35 pm
Location: USA

Re: Who owns the code produced by student developers?

Post by buddy » Wed Mar 21, 2007 8:02 pm

Bananmos wrote: ...is left open for the mentoring organization to decide on. So I'd like to ask what Ogre's terms are? Is the student free to license the code under an alternative license in addition to the LGPL?
I guess it depends on the project - i.e. for a tool alternative license is ok, but for core functionality it does not seem so feasible..
0 x

User avatar
Praetor
OGRE Retired Team Member
OGRE Retired Team Member
Posts: 3335
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2005 8:26 pm
Location: Rochester, New York, US
Contact:

Post by Praetor » Wed Mar 21, 2007 8:24 pm

If the code is going to be in any part of Ogre at all, then the only option is that the code becomes "Ogre's." Sinbad has had to rewrite some patches before because author's disappeared and left ambiguous licensing issues behind. In order for the code to be useful in any way, it needs to be able to fit in with the rest of Ogre's licensing.
0 x

User avatar
hmoraldo
OGRE Expert User
OGRE Expert User
Posts: 517
Joined: Tue Mar 07, 2006 11:22 pm
Location: Buenos Aires, Argentina
Contact:

Post by hmoraldo » Wed Mar 21, 2007 8:31 pm

But can't the code be Ogre's, and at the same time be SomeStudent's? Is copyright necessarily exclusive? (maybe that's a silly question, but I wonder anyway)
0 x
H. Hernan Moraldo
Personal website

User avatar
BRAINLESS
Goblin
Posts: 282
Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2005 6:56 pm
Location: The Netherlands

Post by BRAINLESS » Wed Mar 21, 2007 8:35 pm

I think the point is: if he writes something for Ogre (which is GPL'd code) is he allowed to use it in another project that is not GPL. I think the answer is yes.

Please correct me if I'm wrong :)
0 x
Proud member of the OpenFRAG Game Development community

User avatar
Wolfmanfx
OGRE Team Member
OGRE Team Member
Posts: 1525
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2006 10:37 pm
Location: Austria - Leoben
x 1
Contact:

Post by Wolfmanfx » Wed Mar 21, 2007 8:39 pm

Yep ur wrong Ogre is LGPL ;)
0 x

User avatar
haffax
OGRE Retired Moderator
OGRE Retired Moderator
Posts: 4823
Joined: Fri Jun 18, 2004 1:40 pm
Location: Berlin, Germany
Contact:

Post by haffax » Wed Mar 21, 2007 8:47 pm

The copyright holder can issue multiple non-exclusive licenses, in which case multiple licensees can use the code within the terms of such a license.

So, if Sinbad decides, that ownership stays with the student, then the student grants TKS, the mentoring organisation the usage right under LGPL at least, but has to also grant it under the terms of Ogre's contributor agreement.

So if a student agrees to these terms, he/she can as well keep the copyright on the code, as far as Ogre is concerned, since TKS' usage of the code is covered by the contributor agreement.

So in this case, the student can license the code to another party or do anything else with it (Though he/she can't revoke the license held by TKS, because the contributor agreement doesn't allow this for obvious reasons. ;))
0 x
team-pantheon programmer
creators of Rastullahs Lockenpracht

User avatar
Praetor
OGRE Retired Team Member
OGRE Retired Team Member
Posts: 3335
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2005 8:26 pm
Location: Rochester, New York, US
Contact:

Post by Praetor » Wed Mar 21, 2007 11:08 pm

Yeah, sure. As long as Ogre can incorporate it then the student can take and do whatever they want with it afterwards. That makes sense.
0 x

Bananmos
Gnoblar
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue Jan 23, 2007 8:36 pm

Post by Bananmos » Thu Mar 22, 2007 12:53 am

Sounds fair and reasonable. Now I'm just waiting for Sinbad to confirm that this is indeed the case. ;)
0 x

User avatar
sinbad
OGRE Retired Team Member
OGRE Retired Team Member
Posts: 19265
Joined: Sun Oct 06, 2002 11:19 pm
Location: Guernsey, Channel Islands
x 2
Contact:

Post by sinbad » Thu Mar 22, 2007 4:14 pm

Please read our Contributor License Agreement- all contributors, including Summer of Code students, have to agree to this. It basically allows us to release the contributed code under our chosen licenses (LGPL and OUL).

Notice that we do not ask contributors to assign copyright, which a lot of other projects do. Assigning copyright would mean that the code would become wholly owned by us - other projects do this because it simplifies the legal position should we ever have to, for example, go after someone for copyright infringement or something like that. However it would also mean that you don't own the code you contribute anymore and can't therefore re-license it yourself.

I chose not to ask for copyright assignment, allowing the contributor to retain the right to use their code for other purposes if they choose, and re-license it if they choose. Whilst this makes things less clear-cut, I felt it was fairer for the individual contributor and is what I would want as a developer if I was contributing something larger.
0 x

Post Reply