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RE: Copyrighting schemas, Hailstorm

  • From: Michael Rys <mrys@m...>
  • To: "Henry S. Thompson" <ht@c...>,"Simon St.Laurent" <simonstl@s...>
  • Date: Fri, 01 Jun 2001 13:46:25 -0700

copyrighting a schema
Please also note that according to the Berne Convention on Copyright,
everything that is written (Book, letter, email, programs, schema
definitions) are implicitly copyrighted by the writer and need a stated
assertion to another copyright holder or to the public domain. This and
the lack of knowledge of the general public w.r.t. copyright law is
probably why companies tend to add copyright notices explicitly to such
things as schema definitions...

Best regards
Michael (speaking for myself and not as a lawyer or employee of

Copyright notice: This email is implicitly copyrighted by Michael Rys,
unless his employment contract would state that every email sent from
his company email account would become copyrighted by his employer.
Explicit right is granted to store entire copies of this email on
computer systems not belonging to the copyright holder as long as they
are not changed. Furthermore citations for the purpose of answering to
this email in any media format, either in its entirety or by quoting
extraction is allowed, assuming that the copyright owner is receiving a
copy of the citation. Etc.etc. :-)

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Henry S. Thompson [mailto:ht@c...] 
> Sent: Friday, June 01, 2001 7:54 AM
> To: Simon St.Laurent
> Cc: xml-dev@l...
> Subject: Re: Copyrighting schemas, Hailstorm
> "Simon St.Laurent" <simonstl@s...> writes:
> > Clay Shirky has an article on Hailstorm up at: 
> > http://www.openp2p.com/pub/a/p2p/2001/05/30/hailstorm.html
> > 
> > Shirky raises copyright and control as a central issue in 
> Microsoft's 
> > Hailstorm strategy:
> > 
> > >This is the most audacious aspect of HailStorm, and the 
> core of the 
> > >describe-and-defend strategy. Microsoft wants to create a schema 
> > >which describes all possible user transactions, and then copyright 
> > >that schema, in order to create and manage the ontology of life on 
> > >the Internet. In HailStorm as it was described, all entities, 
> > >methods, and transactions will be defined and mediated by 
> Microsoft 
> > >or Microsoft-licensed developers, with Microsoft acting as 
> a kind of 
> > >arbiter of descriptions of electronic reality:
> > 
> > We've had discussions of whether copyrighting a schema has any 
> > implications for control.  I can definitely see limitations 
> on derived 
> > works, which strikes me as unfortunate, but I'd really like 
> to have a 
> > clearer explanation from someone as to how intellectual 
> property and 
> > XML interact in the legal world...
> Shirky's worry doesn't fit with my understanding of 
> copyright.  A copyright is not a patent.  A work must clearly 
> be derived _in its expression_, not its substance, from the 
> original, to be an infringing derivative.  Otherwise for 
> example no songs about, well, almost anything, would be publishable.
> ht
> -- 
>   Henry S. Thompson, HCRC Language Technology Group, 
> University of Edinburgh
>           W3C Fellow 1999--2001, part-time member of W3C Team
>      2 Buccleuch Place, Edinburgh EH8 9LW, SCOTLAND -- (44) 
> 131 650-4440
> 	    Fax: (44) 131 650-4587, e-mail: ht@c...
> 		     URL: http://www.ltg.ed.ac.uk/~ht/
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