Re: data sources

Date: Mon May 28 2007 - 18:51:34 CDT

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    Quoting William J Poser <>:

    > John Jenkins wrote:
    >> When you send in your data file, let us know where the data came
    >> from. The data should be in the public domain or covered by a license
    >> consistent with the rest of the Unihan database. In particular, this
    >> means that we can't accept data from GPL sources.
    > This doesn't sound right to me. Data per se cannot be copyrighted,
    > though particular presentations of data can be. Copying an entire
    > compilation of character data released under the GPL or with other
    > copyright restrictions would be a problem, but even verbatim copying of
    > modest portions of such a compilation falls under fair use, and
    > non-verbatim use of data is not subject to copyright at all.
    > So, granting that one has to be careful about how one uses data obtained
    > from copyrighted sources, the above statement seems overly restrictive.
    > Bill

    there would seem to be several arguements to say data could be included;_

    (1) data that is non-creative in nature can not be copyrighted as such
    -- a table of Morohashi indexes to Unicode is non creative (accept for
    the lines which are wrong! remove these and everyone is happy). This
    is the most relevant point.

    (2) GPL, general public license, is in many respects putting something
    under public domain - if the phrasing of the terms for Unicode don't
    allow for this, then unless we appy the non-creative rule (1). It may
    well be hard in the future for Unihan.txt to be expanded. I suggest
    the unicode rules should be revised to allow GPL data.

    (3) with this data which anyone can download, the fact that it is
    placed under GPL in such a way means that the "author" wishes the data
    to be available and I can not see how they will object to either it
    being placed in Unihan.txt and changing it (which is allowed under the
    terms of GPL)

    (4) If Unihan.txt does have this restrcition (see the above points
    above which suggest it does not have), and does not change it, then in
    the futuure it may well be outdone by a UnihanGPL.txt.

    John Knightley

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