An American court has ruled in favour of Robert Jacobsen – a man who wrote software for model trains and released it under an open source license. Ignoring the requirement in the license that derivative work credit the original and provide the original code, a commercial company made a product using the code. Under this court decision, the violation of the open source license means that the company’s behaviour consitutes copyright infringement.
I personally see a lot of value to the ‘some rights reserved’ approach of Creative Commons and others. By not requiring payment for non-commercial usage, such licenses can avoid blocking the experimentation of hobbyists. By reserving rights over later commercial usage, they prevent the abuse of materials created for general public usage. Such licenses provide the flexibility to share, along with the assurance that others will share in return.
Seeing the legal integrity of such contracts upheld is thus especially gratifying. For information on the Creative Commons license applied to my blog posts and photographs, see this page.