[legal] [OpenID] Draft OpenID Intellectual Property RightsPolicy for Review

David Recordon drecordon at sixapart.com
Fri Oct 26 22:51:30 UTC 2007

Hi Siddharth,
I'm unsure of the current status of this, but it certainly isn't  
being ignored.


On Oct 26, 2007, at 12:07 PM, Bajaj, Siddharth wrote:

> Hi David,
> The only comment that VeriSign still has open is around the  
> reinstatement of
> 'scope'.
> What is the latest consensus on this issue?
> Siddharth
> David Recordon wrote:
>> Hi all,
>> Just wanted to remind everyone that if you have comments, please make
>> sure they are received by the 26th which is only a few days away.  So
>> far we still seem to be on track to finalize this IPR policy.
>> Thanks again,
>> --David
>> On Sep 26, 2007, at 8:35 AM, David Recordon wrote:
>>> 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
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> general mailing list
>>> general at openid.net
>>> http://openid.net/mailman/listinfo/general
>> _______________________________________________
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>> http://openid.net/mailman/listinfo/legal

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