Arnt Karlsen wrote:
On Wed, 22 Sep 2004 18:58:16 +0100, Mat wrote in message <[EMAIL PROTECTED]@mamaloucos.com>:


I just rang Europress publishers of the Getmapping "high in the sky"
series (reminded by Boris's question). I spoke to Richard
Charge their head of Sales. To be very clear this is different to what
Boris was asking but still interesting, well at least for anyone
interested in photo scenery for the UK.


I have been asking Getmapping if it is permissible use for people to
buy their CDs and then use the exported image in FG in a personal
flight sim.



..wrong question; IMHO you should have said "_GPL_ flight sim." With
"personal", "open source", "freedom" etc thrown in for good measure to get him hooked. They have allowed "freebee personal but closed
source use", which isn't too useful for GPL Flightgear development.

I think the question in itself is not even 'wrong' it rather resembles the low expectations of the person who asked ;-)

And I can understand that point, too - ultimately it doesn't feel
that good to ask for a freebie ;-)

But I agree with Arnt that mentioning the kind of simulator / project
and what kind of purpose their imagery would fullfil, so maybe one
could really send a clarification eMail and re-phrase some of the
wording, even if it's just to get a clear statement about whether
the data could converted to FlightGear specific textures for
scenery rendering.

Something like this would of course not sound particularly attractive
to a company that makes money, selling that very data.

On the other hand, I could imagine that there's a better chance if
you state clearly that FlightGear would not directly use their
(viewer) program, nor would it directly use their image data,
but rather the data would need to be converted into a separate
format ...

One could even offer them to show them how to do it exactly, that
way they can make up their own mind and decide whether they permit
derived work from their product to be releases under the GPL.

Again, it would certainly NOT be wrong to mention the "noble purposes"
of the FlightGear project, and that it can be used on most platforms,
that it is meant to be free - and hence depends on these kinds of
inquiries.

So if you make sure that this is not a product that will be sold again,
but rather that this whole thing is meant to remain free at all costs,
they know at least that this is not some company trying to make money
by using their data ...

And one should still _mention_ the possibility to honor "contributors"
by either mentioning them on the project's page in the contributor's
section, or really adding some small about dialog where users can
read "Scenery imagery generously donated for GPL use by GetMapping"
or anything like that.

In that context it might be worth to list some real life examples of
COMPANIES that supported FlightGear in a SIMILAR manner, but I'm
certainly less updated about such cases than you ... anyway, what
comes to my mind is the company that donated audio sound recordings
to be used within FlightGear.


Of course, it would not harm at all to mention some other BIG names, and I've seen names like "ARINC", "NASA" in the contributor's section etc. which *contributed* to FG in one way or the other, this can probably be used as an encouraging factor, too

Personally, I think that your odds are a lot higher if you put it this
way and also show the corresponding company that this is AN OPPORTUNITY.

Regardless of the feedback that you will ultimately receive, I would
not mind to send such inquiries to other companies that sell
satellite imagery.


He confirmed he has checked with Getmapping and that this is OK we
even talked about the possibility of a discount for Flightgear users.
I then got this email.


"Hi Mat,

Following our conversation today I am happy for you to use High In the
Sky products in conjunction with your "Mesh / Flight Sim" software.
This on the basis that you do not re-engineer or alter the High In The
Sky program code in the process and that the product will be used for
Social and Domestic use only.


..such a _wonderful_ way of sayng "No!" to our GPL project. Or did he say "Yes"? What does he mean by "Social and Domestic use only"???

To be honest, I highly doubt that the person who replied did really understand what this is all about - looks a lot to me like a rather general response - so a refined inquiriy would probably be not such a bad idea.

Tell them:


FG Intro: - FlightGear is a free GPL'ed flight simulator

        - FlightGear can hence be used for pretty much any purpose

GetMapping:
        - not the actual application will be used

        - The viewer application would not be modified
        
        - there's no reverse engineering involved
        
Offer:

        - The FlightGear project offers them a CHANGE to
          become a supporter of this project - and they would
          would be OFFICIALLY mentioned

        - if this is not yet appealing enough to them ONE COULD STILL
          THINK ABOUT OFFERING THEM *FREE ADS* on the FlightGear webpage
          in return for the permission to use derived work of their
          imagery for FlightGear


Regardless of FlightGear's opensource nature, you simply need to think market-oriented when it comes to negotiating with companies that simply want to see something in return - they want to see a revenue or anything like that, so offering them to become an official supporter of the opensource project "FlightGear" (which they can also mention on their own webpages !) would at least be ONE thing, offering them to place a *simple* ad on flightgear.org in return for the permission to convert their images to terragear textures would be ONE way for them to consider "hey, we *might* see some revenue if they advertise for our company/product free of charge".

Think about it: if you were running such a company, what could
make YOU say 'YES' to such an inquiry ?

And even though Erik mentioned some time ago that there would
never be direct advertisement WITHIN FlightGear (i.e. the
splash screen thing that I mentioned) I personally WOULD NOT
THINK that it would be negative at all to overlay a simple
string over each splash screen saying:

        Ground Textures for area .... - .... were generously
        donated by GetMapping.com

And one could still think about displaying this only a short
amount of time - if implemented as layer ON the actual
splash image.

Even without prior consulting Curt I think that offering anything
else for that matter is SAFE, simply because the worst case scenario
is that they say 'YES - if you mention us on your webpage and we're
allowed to link to our company's webpage'

So, if they should indeed decide to donate imagery material ONLY
if they're mention during startup in some kind of splash ...
hell: ulitmately there's no need to accept that offer at all,
if there are too many people against it - but THEN it's a matter
of VOTING *for* or *against* it, taking into consideration the
potential gains !




---------- Boris


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