This preamble describes how to use the standard eCos copyright assignment form. The rationale behind this assignment is to avoid any possible confusion over the legal ownership of eCos , and to indemnify Red Hat and all eCos users against copyright or patent claims on contributed code used within eCos . Red Hat would be especially vulnerable, but all users and their eCos based applications could be affected.
All contributions to eCos for which there are copyright assignments will be covered by the Red Hat eCos public license. The license provides a guarantee that the contribution will remain freely available to all.
This agreement gives Red Hat ownership of your changes but promises that you will retain the right to use your contributed changes as you see fit.
Because employers often can claim ownership over things that employees write, you may also have to get your employer to sign a disclaimer that says that they have no claim to the changes you are contributing.
Please read everything, and if you have any questions, email
Thanks for your contribution to eCos !
The way to assign copyright to Red Hat is to sign an assignment contract. This is what makes Red Hat the legal copyright holder, so that Red Hat can register the copyright on the new version.
If you are employed as a programmer (even at a university), or have made an agreement with your employer or school that gives them ownership of the software you write, then Red Hat needs a signed letter from your employer disclaiming rights to the contributed software.
The disclaimer should be printed on the company's headed paper, and signed by an officer of the company, or someone authorized to license the company's intellectual property. Here is an example of wording that can be used for this purpose:
<INSERT COMPANY NAME> hereby disclaims all copyright interest in the changes and enhancements made by <INSERT YOUR NAME> to eCos , including any future revisions of these changes and enhancements.
<INSERT COMPANY NAME> affirms that it has no other intellectual property interest that would undermine this release, or the use of eCos , and will do nothing to undermine it in the future.
<INSERT SIGNATURE OF OFFICER OF COMPANY>,
<INSERT PRINTED NAME OF OFFICER OF COMPANY>
<INSERT TITLE OF OFFICER>
If your employer says they do have an intellectual property claim that could conflict with the use of the program, then please contact Red Hat to discuss possible next steps.
Below is the usual assignment contract. You need to edit and replace <INSERT NAME OF CONTRIBUTOR> with your full name. Please print a copy, sign, date, and mail it to:
Legal Department (eCos Assignments)
Red Hat, Inc.
2600 Meridian Parkway
Don't forget to include the original signed copy of the employer's disclaimer.
Please try to print the whole first page of the form on a single piece of paper. If it doesn't fit on one printed page, put it on two sides of a single piece of paper, and attach the second page of the form. Please write the date using letters rather than numbers to avoid any confusion due to international day/month ordering conventions.
Note: This text is also available in the eCos software distribution, in the file assign.txt.
--------------------------------- Cut Here ----------------------------------
For good and valuable consideration, receipt of which I acknowledge, I, <INSERT NAME OF CONTRIBUTOR>, hereby transfer to Red Hat, Inc. my entire right, title, and interest (including all rights under copyright) in my changes and enhancements to eCos, subject to the conditions below. These changes and enhancements are herein called the "Work". The Work hereby assigned shall also include any future revisions of these changes and enhancements hereafter made by me.
Upon thirty days prior written notice, Red Hat agrees to grant me non-exclusive rights to use the Work (i.e. just my changes and enhancements, not eCos as a whole) as I see fit; (and Red Hat's rights shall otherwise continue unchanged).
I hereby agree that if I have or acquire hereafter any patent or interface copyright or other intellectual property interest dominating the software enhanced by the Work (or use of that software), such dominating interest will not be used to undermine the effect of this assignment, i.e. Red Hat and the general public will be licensed to use, in that program and its derivative works, without royalty or limitation, the subject matter of the dominating interest. This license provision will be binding on my heirs, assignees, or other successors to the dominating interest, as well as on me.
I hereby represent and warrant that I am the sole copyright holder for the Work and that I have the right and power to enter into this contract. I hereby indemnify and hold harmless Red Hat, its officers, employees, and agents against any and all claims, actions or damages (including attorney's reasonable fees) asserted by or paid to any party on account of a breach or alleged breach of the foregoing warranty. I make no other express or implied warranty (including without limitation, in this disclaimer of warranty, any warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE).
Date: [Please write using letters]
For Red Hat:
-------------------- Cut Here and print on separate page ---------------------
[Please print your name here]
[For the copyright registration, of what country are you a citizen?]
[In what year were you born?]
[Please write your email address here]
[Please write your address here, so we can mail a signed copy of the agreement back to you]
[Please write a brief description of the contribution]
[Which files have you changed so far, and which new files have you written so far?]
Appendix 3: The eCos Copyright Assignment Form, Revision 1.1