The Shuttleworth Foundation believes that open licensing can provide powerful fuel for innovation. We’ve seen this at a large scale in the technology world with open source. We believe that open licensing also has the potential to spark and accelerate social innovation.
Our Statement of Principle outlines our policy on open licensing for materials created or funded by the Shuttleworth Foundation.
Open Resources Statement of Principle
The Foundation is committed to opening intellectual resources created or co-created by the Foundation, in Foundation projects or with Foundation funds (Foundation resources).
Intellectual resources include software, project reports, manuals, research results and the like which are ready to be communicated to the public. Foundation resources shall be open resources as far as reasonably possible. Resources are open resources when they are available for revision, translation, improvement and sharing under open licences, open standards and in open formats, free of technical protection measures.
All agreements entered into by the Foundation which include the creation of resources shall ensure that the resources are open resources, and shall record how the Intellectual Property in the resources is owned and licensed.
The Foundation recognises that there are a number of legitimate reasons when resources may not be made open. When documents are not made open then they may, when suitable, be made available on an open access basis, which permits copying but does not allow any changes. Considerations of privacy, confidentiality, security and utility may preclude making certain documents or information available outside the Foundation.
Software created by the Foundation, in Foundation projects or with Foundation funds is released under the GNU General Public Licence, or other suitable Free Libre Open Source Software (FLOSS) licence.
Copyright works, other than software, are released under appropriate open licences; Creative Commons Attribution licence (CC_BY) or the GNU Free Documentation licence (GNU FDL), or into the Public Domain.
Trademarks, Universal Resource Locators and artistic or other works which are the logos or form part of the brands of the Foundation or Foundation projects are not placed under open licences, and may be used only as explicitly permitted by the Foundation.
If there is sufficient justification an ‘alternative licence’ other than Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike or the GNU FDL may be used, for example to allow the better integration of a resource into a larger resource pool.
The Foundation prefers Creative Commons licences which do not circumscribe moral rights such as the Creative Commons South Africa 2.5 and Creative Commons Generic (Unported) 3.0 licence, or subsequent versions of those licences.
Whilst we start from a principle of open, the Foundation recognises that at times there are specific compelling reasons for explicit exemptions to these principles in respect of particular resources. The decision to exempt a resource from any open practice and the justification for the exception will be recorded and reported.