On 28 February 2017 at 06:11, James Salsman <jsals...@gmail.com> wrote:

> > 17 U.S. Code ยง 203 - Termination of transfers and licenses
> > granted by the author
>

I don't usually post to this list and hope this isn't too off-topic, but,
coincidentally, I've looked into that matter a bit last year as a
tangential issue (from a comparative law perspective). So, I don't know if
you're aware and interested, but there are some articles dealing with this
termination issue under U.S. copyright law in the context of open-content
licenses.

Specifically, I'd refer you to Loren, Building a Reliable Semicommons of
Creative Works, 14 Geo. Mason L. Rev. 271, 318-28 (2007) (arguing that
section 203 is inapplicable to CC licenses under a suggested doctrine of
limited copyright abandonment); Armstrong, Shrinking the Commons, 47 Harv.
J. on Legis. 359, 405-09 (2010) (expressing skepticism as to whether courts
would adopt Professor Loren's approach, suggesting, alternatively, an
analogy to the abandonment provisions of the Patent Act to justify limits
on the termination of open-content licenses); and Greenberg, More than Just
a Formality, 59 UCLA L. Rev. 1028, 1060-63 (2012) (suggesting legislative
action). All three articles are also freely available online (in one case
at least in a pre-publication version), at <https://www.law.berkeley.edu/
files/Loren.pdf>, <http://scholarship.law.uc.edu
/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1146&context=fac_pubs>, and <
http://www.uclalawreview.org/pdf/59-4-4.pdf>, respectively.

(None of them are touching upon the derivative work issue, which is a
rather Wikimedia-specific consideration. It could arguably not provide a
universal solution to the potential problem, since the availability of a
derivative work is the exception, rather than the norm, even in an
open-content world. I have therefore not looked into this.)

Best,
Patrik
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