[theme-reviewers] Including Creative Commons Attribution Code

Chip Bennett chip at chipbennett.net
Sun Mar 13 21:14:25 UTC 2011

You need to read the actual license "legalese", not the "human-readable"
summary. Here is the relevant

If You Distribute, or Publicly Perform the Work or any Adaptations or
Collections, You must, unless a request has been made pursuant to Section
4(a), *keep intact all copyright notices for the Work and provide,
reasonable to the medium or means You are utilizing: (i) the name of the
Original Author (or pseudonym, if applicable) if supplied, and/or if the
Original Author and/or Licensor designate another party or parties (e.g., a
sponsor institute, publishing entity, journal) for attribution ("Attribution
Parties") in Licensor's copyright notice, terms of service or by other
reasonable means, the name of such party or parties; (ii) the title of the
Work if supplied; (iii) to the extent reasonably practicable, the URI, if
any, that Licensor specifies to be associated with the Work, unless such URI
does not refer to the copyright notice or licensing information for the Work;
and (iv) , consistent with Section 3(b), in the case of an Adaptation, a
credit identifying the use of the Work in the Adaptation* (e.g., "French
translation of the Work by Original Author," or "Screenplay based on
original Work by Original Author"). The credit required by this Section 4
(b) may be implemented in any reasonable manner; provided, however, that in
the case of a Adaptation or Collection, at a minimum such credit will
appear, if a credit for all contributing authors of the Adaptation or
Collection appears, then as part of these credits and in a manner at least
as prominent as the credits for the other contributing authors. For the
avoidance of doubt, You may only use the credit required by this Section for
the purpose of attribution in the manner set out above and, by exercising
Your rights under this License, You may not implicitly or explicitly assert
or imply any connection with, sponsorship or endorsement by the Original
Author, Licensor and/or Attribution Parties, as appropriate, of You or Your
use of the Work, without the separate, express prior written permission of
the Original Author, Licensor and/or Attribution Parties.

Note this statement:

*unless such URI does not refer to the copyright notice or licensing
information for the Work*

It cannot be any arbitrary link determined by the Author. If a link is
required, it MUST be a URI relevant to the license terms.

Thus, an arbitrary "Author Credit Link", to the Author's personal website,
development website, or anything that isn't specifically related to the
license terms, does not meet this criterion.

Also, "relevant to the work", for PHP code, would be an attribution in the
PHP documentation, NOT a public-facing link (of any kind).


On Sun, Mar 13, 2011 at 2:54 PM, Daniel Tara <contact at onedesigns.com> wrote:

> " Almost every instance of a CC-BY-licensed WordPress Theme that I have
> seen
> has mis-applied the attribution requirement, by requiring an arbitrary,
> public-facing link."
> This is what the CC-BY-SA attribution requirement says:
> " Attribution - You must attribute the work in the manner specified by the
> author or licensor (but not in any way that suggests that they endorse you
> or your use of the work)."
> Unless requiring the credit link to be public facing is considered an
> endorsement of the usage work, there's no misinterpretation in requiring to
> keep a public facing credit link.
> I found this page:
> http://creativecommons.org/compatiblelicenses
> Which states: " to date, Creative Commons has not approved any licenses for
> compatibility; however, we are hopeful that we may be able to do so in the
> future"
> Which suggests CC-BY-SA isn't GPL compatible. I also remember reading
> somewhere that the FSF considers CC-BY-SA to be a free license but not
> compatible with the GPL.
> I also remember there was once a license with the name CC-GPL:
> https://creativecommons.org/license/cc-gpl
> Which now redirects to the original GPL license, which suggests to me they
> dropped their interest in being GPL-compatible.
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