Re: The "intellectual property" misnomer

Discussion in 'Python' started by Ben Finney, Jul 12, 2003.

  1. Ben Finney

    Ben Finney Guest

    On Sat, 12 Jul 2003 04:29:04 GMT, Raymond Hettinger wrote:
    >> >> If the PSF holds the copyright to Python, please say that. If the
    >> >> PSF holds patents which cover Python, please say that. If the PSF
    >> >> owns the trademark for Python, please say that. If the PSF has
    >> >> trade secrets in Python, please say that.

    >
    > PSF is the copyright holder and issuer of the python license to the
    > code covered by that copyright.


    Excellent. So "The PSF is the copyright holder for Python". No need
    for gymnastics, and it actually says something meaningful.

    > In layman's terms, it means exactly what Guido said.


    The layman's understanding of "intellectual property" is confused,
    doesn't relate to reality, and is harmful. Please avoid use of that
    term.

    > Hope this helps,


    It does, thanks.

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    Ben Finney, Jul 12, 2003
    #1
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  2. > >> If the PSF holds the copyright to Python, please say that.
    > >> If the PSF holds patents which cover Python, please say that.
    > >> If the PSF owns the trademark for Python, please say that.
    > >> If the PSF has trade secrets in Python, please say that.

    > >
    > > So you somehow managed to divine Guido's intent from that "ridiculous,
    > > meaningless term"

    >
    > No, I requested that the term be clarified, because *I don't* know what
    > is meant by "The PSF holds the intellectual property rights for Python".
    > It's a meaningless statement as it stands.


    PSF is the copyright holder and issuer of the python license to the
    code covered by that copyright. Type license() at the command
    prompt to see the elaboration using terms that *do* have meaning
    to the legal types who helped craft and vette the wording.

    In layman's terms, it means exactly what Guido said.

    Hope this helps,


    Raymond Hettinger
    Raymond Hettinger, Jul 12, 2003
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  3. Ben Finney

    Peter Hansen Guest

    Ben Finney wrote:
    >
    > On Sat, 12 Jul 2003 04:29:04 GMT, Raymond Hettinger wrote:
    > > In layman's terms, it means exactly what Guido said.

    >
    > The layman's understanding of "intellectual property" is confused,
    > doesn't relate to reality, and is harmful. Please avoid use of that
    > term.


    You've already stated clearly your belief (Are you a lawyer?
    No? So it's merely a belief, right? a personal opinion.)
    that the term "intellectual property" has no legal meaning,
    therefore "layman's" in the above is redundant. The result
    is that you are saying in effect that the term "intellectual
    property" is wrong for everyone on the planet and that no one
    can have a useful meaning for it and therefore must avoid its use.
    One might almost expect you to claim copyright on the phrase and
    refuse to license its reproduction to the rest of us. ;-)

    As far as I'm concerned, "intellectual property" *has* a useful
    meaning, though an ambiguous one (as intended, no doubt), and
    Guido used it in a way which communicated *to me* (as he intended
    it to communicate to people like me) certain information. There's
    no need in non-legal documents to avoid ambiguity and in fact
    there's a lot of advantage in using it. Think of it as a Pythonic
    approach to communication: it's not rigorously defined, yet
    it works!

    You may not like the term, but I got something useful out of
    that use of it, as was intended, and I might feel somewhat
    offended by your telling me and everyone else on the planet that
    we should avoid it when *we* believe it communicates something
    useful, and effectively.

    -Peter
    Peter Hansen, Jul 12, 2003
    #3
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