License for application name and logos (Was: Creative Commons license for pictures)

Patrice Dumas pertusus at
Fri Sep 30 06:54:55 UTC 2005

> GPL with art under CC BY-SA sounds good to me:
> Anyone can still use the images elsewhere.
> Anyone can still reuse the GCFilms code wherever they want.
> Anyone can sell anything ... provided they follow the GPL and the CC
> BY-SA as stipulated.

I think that there could be a problem if the software and the images are
considered to be derivative work of the images or of the code. If it is
the case then the licence must be compatible. But it isn't the case for 
CC BY-SA, nor for GPL nor for GFDL, nor for free art licence as each of 
these licences are incompatible with each others. 

If the logos are solely there to be used to add an icon for a launcher 
then I believe they may be packaged together even if their licence 
conflict. I base that on the fact that in the GNU project the docs are 
licenced under the GFDL and the code is licenced under the GPL and both 
are incompatible.

However if the code and the images are combined together, for example the
image appears in the main window application to decorate a button, then
maybe they have to be compatible.

The documentation seems to me a clearer case. Indeed the images that 
illustrates the documentation must be under a licence compatible with the
licence of the documentation.

This is my understanding of the position of the GNU project. 

The debian project seems to have another position, as it seems to me that 
they prefer (or maybe this is an obligation?) that everything which is 
bundled together must have a compatible licence be it artwork, text or 
software, even when they aren't combined together.

We had a similar problem when we moved texi2html (which is GPL) to savannah. 
The images (which are there to be used as buttons for the documentation by 
users but are not used anywhere in the code or documentation of texi2html) 
were under the CC BY-SA. In the beginning the savannah people said
that it wasn't right, but after more thoughts accepted. Then we were contacted
by debian people who asked to put the images under the GPL. It was easy 
and not a bad idea (because the images came from a GPL project and I had 
explicitely asked for a relicencing under the CC BY-SA long time ago) we 
dual licenced the images.


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