QL Software Preservation - Next Steps

Anything QL Software or Programming Related.
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Dave
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Re: QL Software Preservation - Next Steps

Postby Dave » Sat Mar 10, 2018 10:22 pm

Under US law there is a firm distinction. This is a library, and libraries are treated strictly separately under copyright law. You would not be sharing within the UK, and I would not be publishing any non-free works.

That said, if it's a huge problem for you to send me the archive, isn't it an equally impossible situation for you to possess the archive yourself? Unless you have ever single microdrive and floppy stored with it, you're in the same position you don't want to put others in. That would be something to be unhappy about. It defeats the purpose of you even running the preservation project. If your stated goal was preservation, and your current stated goal is to hand off the preservation responsibilities to someone else, but you won't transfer the body of work..... What did you do it all for?

Finally...

Nobody is going to sue you. Nobody. There is not enough economic value in either game rights or intellectual property in ANY QL software or firmware that is valuable enough to protect with an expensive lawsuit. Enforcement action would be of the cease and desist variety. There isn't an ethical lawyer on the planet who would advise a client to sue. They would send a cease and desist, and the recipient would say, "oh, sorry, we'll stop" and that would be the end of it.


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Re: QL Software Preservation - Next Steps

Postby RWAP » Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:07 pm

Dave wrote:That said, if it's a huge problem for you to send me the archive, isn't it an equally impossible situation for you to possess the archive yourself? Unless you have ever single microdrive and floppy stored with it, you're in the same position you don't want to put others in. That would be something to be unhappy about. It defeats the purpose of you even running the preservation project. If your stated goal was preservation, and your current stated goal is to hand off the preservation responsibilities to someone else, but you won't transfer the body of work..... What did you do it all for?


I still have all of the physical media microdrive carts, disks, manuals etc - hence why I was asking for suggestions.

My preferred option would be for Quanta to take it on, but getting a response out of them nowadays is problematic (as you have found when renewing subscriptions).

As for "What did I do it all for?" It was my personal project - I wanted to create my own collection of QL software and ensure I could continue to use it into the future. It only morphed into a "preservation project" when I started contacting copyright holders to get permission for titles to be re-released - with the idea that more people might get interested, contribute to the project by tracking down copyright holders and getting their permission; and then working on ensuring the latest version was available which would run from within emulators etc and upload it to Dilwyn's site.

The problem was that as soon as I mentioned turning it into a preservation project - I (and my business) got attacked for not simply sharing the whole lot and only two or three people were willing to do anything about trying to get permissions. Hence, why the project has sat in abeyance for the past few years.

I am more than happy to hand over the rather large amount of material and the electronic files to someone but I do need to recoup some of my costs in amassing all of this material (some of which I have owned since 1986). Carriage would also be an issue because there is probably 100-150 KG in weight, once you take into account all of the manuals etc.

Splitting the collection in this way is also problematic; because someone needs to spend many many hours scanning in the manuals and documentation - without which, most QL software will not be readily useable.


Nobody is going to sue you. Nobody. There is not enough economic value in either game rights or intellectual property in ANY QL software or firmware that is valuable enough to protect with an expensive lawsuit. Enforcement action would be of the cease and desist variety. There isn't an ethical lawyer on the planet who would advise a client to sue. They would send a cease and desist, and the recipient would say, "oh, sorry, we'll stop" and that would be the end of it.


Under International copyright law - it is not just a case of being sued. It is a criminal offence to breach copyright - with fines and imprisonment. That is why web-hosting companies are also concerned about anyone uploading software onto websites because the hosting company has equal liability. That is why Kim Dotcom ended up in so much trouble.


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Re: QL Software Preservation - Next Steps

Postby Dave » Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:22 pm

RWAP wrote:The problem was that as soon as I mentioned turning it into a preservation project - I (and my business) got attacked for not simply sharing the whole lot and only two or three people were willing to do anything about trying to get permissions. Hence, why the project has sat in abeyance for the past few years.


I had a few attacks like that myself when my business failed. "You've really let everyone down!" No dude. I saved my home. I saved my marriage. What's more important to you? Yeah, some people are all about 'what have you done for me lately' - the QL community was always smaller and with a different character to other retro computer communities - even the ones you'd think would be closest, like the Spectrum.

RWAP wrote:I am more than happy to hand over the rather large amount of material and the electronic files to someone but I do need to recoup some of my costs in amassing all of this material (some of which I have owned since 1986). Carriage would also be an issue because there is probably 100-150 KG in weight, once you take into account all of the manuals etc.


Yes. You shouldn't be out of pocket. That said, I have two words for you. "Tax write-off." ;)

RWAP wrote:Under International copyright law - it is not just a case of being sued. It is a criminal offence to breach copyright - with fines and imprisonment. That is why web-hosting companies are also concerned about anyone uploading software onto websites because the hosting company has equal liability. That is why Kim Dotcom ended up in so much trouble.


Yes, this is true. But it's not an apples for apples comparison. They did no vetting. They took no effort to make sure the content of their site was distributable. The US federal government was after him for his bitcoin washing operation to conceal the identities of drug dealers. And they used copyright law to bring him down (illegally, as it so happens) in the same way they got that 30s mobster for tax evasion during prohibition. And since then, they have been ordered to give it all back.

You're not the existing focus of a US fed investigation are you? ;)


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Re: QL Software Preservation - Next Steps

Postby RWAP » Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:35 pm

Dave wrote:Yes. You shouldn't be out of pocket. That said, I have two words for you. "Tax write-off." ;)


Only problem is that most of the stuff was bought from personal funds and is not owned by my business - in any event, a tax write-off only gives me back 20% of what I spent on it - who knows what that was over the past 30 years or so....

Alas I am not wealthy and therefore can't afford to just donate the stuff.


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Re: QL Software Preservation - Next Steps

Postby RWAP » Mon May 14, 2018 10:22 pm

I have been pulling together a list of everything I have. I am about half-way through but have already filled a very large box (probably over 25KG in weight due to all of the manuals).

Quite a lot of it is manuals without the disks or microdrive cartridges - see attached list - that is 179 titles to start with.

If anyone has more details about the status of the titles, or the authors, I can add that to the list and it should help others to build up the QL Wiki some more.
Attachments
QL Software Collection.pdf
(60.58 KiB) Downloaded 15 times


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Re: QL Software Preservation - Next Steps

Postby NormanDunbar » Mon May 14, 2018 10:35 pm

Hi Rich,

DJToolkit and WinBack, by me, have been freeware with source code, for sime years now.

Plus, they are already on the Wiki. ;)


Cheers,
Norm.


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Re: QL Software Preservation - Next Steps

Postby RWAP » Tue May 15, 2018 7:17 am

NormanDunbar wrote:Hi Rich,

DJToolkit and WinBack, by me, have been freeware with source code, for sime years now.

Plus, they are already on the Wiki. ;)


Thanks - I will update my list - I can't be expected to know the status of all of those titles - there are probably lots of errors in that list.


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Re: QL Software Preservation - Next Steps

Postby NormanDunbar » Tue May 15, 2018 9:20 pm

No worries Rich, I was just letting you know, as requested.

Anything you have with my name on it is to be considered freeware/open source/do-as-you-like-ware. Plus all my new stuff will be likewise.

I take advantage of the goodwill of others when I need to, so I give back when I can.

Please consider this posting to be explicit permission, to anyone, to follow the "rules" above. My stuff is free.

Cheers,
Norm.


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