[Rd] R datasets ownership(copyright) and license

Spencer Graves spencer.graves at prodsyse.com
Thu Apr 5 16:20:59 CEST 2012

On 4/5/2012 6:08 AM, Hadley Wickham wrote:
>> And you need not look so far afield for that particular lack of rationality. In the US, databases are covered by the Database and Collections of Information Misappropriation Act of 2003 (http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/108/hr3261) which says almost exactly the same thing; that a database that took a lot of time and effort to collate is protected against reproduction 'in commerce' without authorisation.
> That bill died: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/108/hr3261

       After having expressed how copyright law is out of control (and 
further efforts to strengthen enforcement were being sold by the Motion 
Picture Association of America to the US and other governments on the 
grounds that it would make it easier for tyrants to stifle dissent; 
now let me strengthen my support for Hadley's position:

       I think we should vigorously claim "fair use" wherever plausible 
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fair_use) with a contingency plan to 
sabotage CRAN (including all mirrors) once per week if we are 
challenged.  This is crudely analogous to what happened when the  
American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) sued "the 
Girl Scouts for failing to pay for the songs that girls sang around Girl 
Scout campfires." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_Culture_(book) 
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_Culture_%28book%29>) If this happens, 
we should also appeal for help from the Electronic Frontiers Foundation, 
the American Library Association, the American Civil Liberties Union and 
others, who are working to challenge the industry's abuse of power.  In 
2006, Stanford initiated a "Fair Use" project to fight this abuse of 
power, and other initiatives are on-going, as documented in the 
Wikipedia "Fair Use" article.  The major media conglomerates in the US 
and internationally (ABC-Disney, CBS-Westinghouse, NBC-GE, 
CNN-TimeWarner, Fox-NewsCorp / Rupert Murdoch) have distorted the 
political process in the US, Great Britain and elsewhere to favor them 
and the major international corporate advertisers.  (See also my article 
on "Gateway Problems in US Politics & Economics" at 


> Hadley

Spencer Graves, PE, PhD
President and Chief Technology Officer
Structure Inspection and Monitoring, Inc.
751 Emerson Ct.
San José, CA 95126
ph:  408-655-4567
web:  www.structuremonitoring.com

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