What is Non-Copyright?

Joshua Marsh joshua at themarshians.com
Thu May 17 12:20:55 MDT 2012

On Thu, May 17, 2012 at 11:07 AM, AJ ONeal <coolaj86 at gmail.com> wrote:
> Does anyone know if non-copyright is the same as public domain?
> Is it otherwise compatible with open source licenses?
> Is it otherwise compatible with commercial licenses?
They are compatible to a certain extent. The copyright is what gives an
author the ability to distribute and license it how he sees fit. If there
is no copyright, then no one can enforce a license on it (including you).
So, you can put the code in an open source or commercial application, but
you wouldn't be able to enforce your license on that particular code.
Essentially, Copy+Paste is OK. You just want to make it clear to whomever
is going to retain the copyright of your software that the section your
copied is not a part of the copyright or license.

I've done things like this in the past and the legal department simply
asked me to note via comments in the code that a particular function was
public domain and not copyrighted or licensed under the same terms as the
rest of the file.

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