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Introducing the Open Web Foundation Contributor License Agreement 0.9 (OWF CLA)

posted Sep 20, 2010, 6:08 PM by David Rudin   [ updated Sep 27, 2010, 10:04 AM ]
The Open Web Foundation is pleased to announce its first Contributor License Agreement (CLA).  The purpose of this CLA is to establish the rules for how individuals and companies contribute to the development of a specification. This first CLA grants a copyright license to contributions.

The Open Web Foundation encourages and enables specification development communities to work together and concentrate on creating technology – without those communities having to develop custom legal agreements to cover that work.  Since the original Open Web Foundation Agreement (“OWFa”) was launched, the OWFa has been applied to a wide range of specifications, ranging from community developed specifications to specifications released from companies including Facebook, Google, and Microsoft.  We’ve also seen specifications originally released under the OWFa move on to more formal standardization bodies like IETF and W3C.

Where the OWFa was designed to apply to final specifications, the OWF CLA sets the terms that govern contributions to a project during the development phase.  To think of it a different way, the OWF CLA sets out the conditions of fair participation before a specification is finished, while the OWFa applies once the specification is ready to be published and implemented. To learn more, you can review the CLA itself, FAQ, and Deed.

The Open Web Foundation continues to work on other CLAs and on updates to the OWFa, including a CLA that also includes patent grants, and we welcome your involvement. The OWF Legal Affairs Committee is open for self-nominations for participating in the drafting and review process itself, and the Open Web Foundation general discussion list is always available for public input, questions, and support.
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