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USA copyright laws are pretty much complicated, so could you please explain it?

In one comment one of the moderators says:

Licensing code under cc-wiki is not necessary. Fair use is also considered, from USA's laws. In fact, you can show Drupal core code in a post on Stack Exchange; that doesn't mean the code is licensed under cc-wiki too. – kiamlaluno ♦

But the footer of this page says:

user contributions licensed under cc-wiki with attribution required

And what is a code in question if not an user's contribution? Can I assume code posted here to be CC, or can't I?

Drupal's licence is, as far as I understand, CC-compatible already so that's not exactly good example to clarify things.

How does Fair Use work with Stack Exchange Network Terms of Service, point 3? How can anyone agree that all content that he contributes to the Network is perpetually and irrevocably licensed to Stack Exchange under the Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike license, if some content was never licensed to him in the first place?

And second concern, how can we distinguish fair use from code written by entry's author? Usually quotation marks means "warning, text from outside this work", but in case of code that's not really feasible, as most of the time code is already altered to anon it, or to customise it for some particular needs. And even if it isn't, no one ever wraps code into a quote. It seems possible with 5 spaces after quotation mark, but also looks like code formatting does not work then.

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The definition of fair use given by Wikipedia is the following:

Fair use is a doctrine that permits limited use of copyrighted material without acquiring permission from the rights holders. Examples of fair use include commentary, search engines, criticism, news reporting, research, teaching, library archiving and scholarship. It provides for the legal, unlicensed citation or incorporation of copyrighted material in another author's work under a four-factor balancing test.

Drupal core code is licensed under GPLv2, and without permission of the author, I cannot relicense it under a different license. I can incorporate it in a post licensed under cc-wiki, as far as I don't quote the full code.

Notice that fair use is different from license compatibility, as the latter is about creating a derivative work.

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    OK, but how does it work with Stack Exchange Network Terms of Service, point 3? How can anyone agree that all content that he contributes to the Network is perpetually and irrevocably licensed to Stack Exchange under the Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike license, if some content was never licensed to him in the first place? – Mołot Sep 20 '13 at 9:57
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    And second concern, how can we distinguish fair use from code written by entry's author? Usually quotation marks means "warning, text from outside this work", but in case of code that's not really feasible, as most of the time code is already altered to anon it, or to customise it for some particular needs. – Mołot Sep 20 '13 at 10:05
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    @Mołot You're getting into a pretty sketchy area of law there (especially when you take jurisdiction into account). I think it would take an IP lawyer to properly answer. We can speculate based on our understanding of the various licenses and regional statutes, but what you're really asking for is an explanation of a specific point of law - anyone who's not legally qualified to answer is putting themselves in an awkward position if they try to insist on their point – Clive Sep 20 '13 at 16:08
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    @Clive I agree it's difficult area and I hope one day one of the SE lawyers will answer it here or on main meta. – Mołot Sep 21 '13 at 11:10

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