Saturday, March 10, 2007

 

Open Source Lawyers

As open source becomes more ubiquitous, lawyers will have a stronger need to understand it...



The desire to contribute to open source on company time is compelling yet problematic for those of a legal background. Open sharing of information is a bigger cultural shift in terms of this profession than others in that the notion of sharing information to prevent a problem doesn't occur as much as sharing of information after a problem has already happened.

Luckily, lawyers too are embracing the notion of community. Most recently I ran across the Open Bar Association where they feature discussions for lawyers by lawyers from all over the planet. Some of the topics discussed include linking analysis, GPL and license compatibility and other considerations.

I am hopeful that some of the industry analysts that I have the utmost respect for such as James Governor, Raven Zachary, Neil Macehiter, Alex Fletcher and others can contribute to the discussion and at least normalize the perspective on basic questions such as what is open source, best practices for corporate IP policies, engineering tips for derivative works and ways that enterprises could accelerate their participation...




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