Martin Atkins (mart) wrote in lj_biz,
Martin Atkins

Ownership of Mood Icons and other imagery

There were some people who asked in support recently if they were allowed to use some of the mood icons from LiveJournal on their site. At the time, respondants to these queries were unsure who owned the images from a copyright perspective, and just settled for the "ask the person who made them" response.

However, apon reading the Terms of Service, it appears that any volunteer of LiveJournal is doing "work for hire" and as such LiveJournal, rather than the volunteer, has the copyright on everything including the images.

So, the question is: do we allow people to borrow our mood images? Some would instantly shout 'no' in response to this question, but do bear in mind that the images are associated with open source software licenced under the GPL, which permits free use of the code for any purpose so long as no other users are denied the same rights. One long-standing bone of contention is whether or not the images are (or even can be) covered by the sourcecode licence, and if not are we willing to let users use one or two of the images elsewhere?


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