[OpenID board] Draft OpenID Intellectual Property Rights Policy forReview

David Recordon drecordon at sixapart.com
Wed Sep 26 17:43:26 UTC 2007

I suggested legal at openid.net so that it will be easier to keep track  
of the conversation. :)

On Sep 26, 2007, at 10:35 AM, Drummond Reed wrote:

> David,
> First I want to say to you, Bill Washburn, the other OpenID  
> Foundation board
> members, and others in the community who worked with you on this:  
> nice job.
> I know it's been a huge amount of work, but it's worth it in every  
> way.
> Second: I agree you needed to send this message to both legal and  
> general,
> but it would be great if we could agree to use one list for the  
> feedback
> discussion.
> How about general, since feedback is a topic for the whole  
> community? (I'm
> cc'ing legal on this message just so they know to use general.)
> =Drummond
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: board-bounces at openid.net [mailto:board-bounces at openid.net]  
>> On Behalf
>> Of David Recordon
>> Sent: Wednesday, September 26, 2007 8:35 AM
>> To: legal at openid.net
>> Cc: general at openid.net
>> Subject: [OpenID board] Draft OpenID Intellectual Property Rights  
>> Policy
>> forReview
>> Since the early summer we've been working to define an intellectual
>> property rights policy and process for technical OpenID specification
>> work moving forward.  The goal of this work is to truly allow the
>> community to continue to live up to Brad Fitzpatrick's original
>> "nobody should own this" statement.  As the community has grown this
>> year to include participation of larger companies, the desire to make
>> this statement a reality from a legal perspective has been quite
>> strong.  To achieve this, a group of representatives from the OpenID
>> Foundation, AOL, Microsoft, VeriSign, Sun, Symantec, and Yahoo!
>> worked to help draft and review a policy and related documents basing
>> the work upon similar policies from the IETF, OASIS, W3C, and Liberty
>> Alliance.  Today we're asking for review of this work for thirty days
>> so that before the end of the year we as a community can adopt the
>> policy and release the OpenID Authentication 2.0 specification final
>> version under it.
>> As to the question of "What does this mean to me", there are a few
>> answers:
>>   - If you are using/implementing OpenID there is nothing that you
>> need to do to be protected by this policy.  All future work will be
>> covered by it and the policy includes provisions to retroactively
>> apply the non-assertion covenant to OpenID Authentication 1.1, OpenID
>> Simple Registration 1.0, and Yadis 1.0.
>>   - If you have actively contributed to one of the OpenID
>> specifications (especially if you have written text for 2.0) we will
>> be contacting you proactively over the next month for feedback on the
>> policy and asking you to agree to it.  This will thus allow us as a
>> community to release the 2.0 specification this year under the  
>> policy.
>>   - Once the policy is adopted, specification work will be broken up
>> into "working groups" based upon a topic.  For example Authentication
>> and Attribute Exchange will most likely become two working groups
>> with each group having its own specs-<foo>@openid.net mailing list.
>> This is to allow for IPR promises from the larger companies which may
>> not wish to participate in every OpenID community effort.  Before
>> posting to one of these working group lists for the first time, you
>> will be required to agree to the policy.  This will ensure that all
>> formal contributions to the final specifications are covered by the
>> policy and the resulting spec does not have any known IPR  
>> encumbrances.
>> As part of this effort, we've also drafted a rationale document to
>> help explain some of the "design decisions" the group made.
>> Generally I recommend you read that document (it is free from
>> legalese) and it can be found at http://openid.net/ipr/
>> OpenID_IPR_Rationale-Circulation_Draft_20070925.pdf.  The policy and
>> process documents themselves can be found at http://openid.net/ipr/.
>> (I apologize for the PDFs, we'll get these up in HTML format before
>> they're final).  If you didn't see your question answered in this
>> email, please do look at the rationale document as it hopefully will
>> already be answered there.
>> We've tried to keep the policy and process as simple as possible
>> while still giving the needed legal protections and are looking for
>> feedback around the process.  One thing to keep in mind is that the
>> process is based on consensus (much like the IETF or ASF) and many of
>> the clauses only apply in the case that consensus is impossible to
>> reach (which is viewed as being quite rare).  There is also still
>> some word-smithing which is needed, so anyplace it seems like we
>> meant to say the "OpenID Foundation" instead of "OpenID", we probably
>> meant to. :)
>> We realize this is a lot to process, but have tried our best to
>> represent the views of a wide range of companies with varying IPR
>> positions as well as the values of this community.  We're certainly
>> interested in feedback and questions, ideally within the next thirty
>> days sent to legal at openid.net.  Differing from many discussions, even
>> if all you have to say is "+1" that is valuable feedback so that we
>> can know if we're on the right track.  Please also feel free to
>> contact me off-list if there are any questions or concerns you have
>> that you don't wish to discuss publicly though we certainly encourage
>> this discussion to happen on the list.
>> Thanks again to everyone who has been involved in this work!
>> --David
>> _______________________________________________
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