Legal Tools Translation/4.0/Finnish

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Translation of 4.0 into Legal Tools Translation/4.0/Finnish

{{#set: Name=Legal Tools Translation/4.0/Finnish}}

Jurisdictions participating in the translation

Language coordination
No other jurisdictions

Actual timeline

Submission of Translation Proposal to Regional Coordinator: 2013/05/01
Submission of First Draft: {{{actualdraftdate}}}
Start of public comment period: {{{actualpublicdate}}}
End of public comment period: {{{actualpublicenddate}}}
Publication Date: {{{actualend_date}}}

Proposed timeline

Estimated Submission of First Draft: 2013/11/01
Estimated Start of public comment period: 2014/05/01
Estimated End of public comment period: 2014/05/15
Estimated Publication Date: 2014/10/25

Translation process
The method for choosing a translation for any specific term or concept involved a review of whether there was an established translation of the same term or concept to be found from (in order of preference):

  1. the official Finnish translation of the text of the Berne Convention;
  2. the official Finnish translation of the Copyright Directive (2001/29/EC);
  3. the official Finnish translation of any other relevant EU directive, such as the Database Directive (96/9/EC);
  4. Finnish legal literature; or
  5. otherwise established use.

With regard to the more general and contractual terminology and elements of the license text (as opposed to those derived mainly from copyright law), the emphasis was on finding the most suitable, established and commonly used translations and Finnish concepts corresponding to the mainly common law terms and concepts used in the text. Here, we relied heavily on our reviewers’ experience with international license and other similar agreements. The translation guide for the 4.0 licenses1 was observed closely throughout the process.

The iteration process for the translation included the following steps:

  1. First draft: Composed by Henri Tanskanen, Associate, HH Partners, Attorneys-at-law Ltd. Mr. Tanskanen has over three years of experience on questions related to open source licensing and other open licensing models gained from work experience at HH Partners and Nokia Corporation. In addition to this, Mr. Tanskanen has five years of various work experience, both legal and non-legal, related to the software industry.
  2. First review: Review of the first draft. Performed by Martin von Willebrand, Attorney-at-Law and Partner, HH Partners, Attorneys-at-law. Mr. von Willebrand has extensive experience on domestic and international assignments in technology, such as licensing, transfer of rights, protection of IPRs and knowledge, open source and copyright questions. For example Legal 500, Chambers, Best Lawyers, Who's Who Legal and many other publications rate him among top technology practitioners in Finland.
  3. Further iterative reviews: The draft was further discussed and reviewed by Liisa Laakso-Tammisto, translator (authorized) and a group of lawyers with extensive experience in Intellectual Property Rights, consisting of the afore-mentioned lawyers at HH Partners, as well as Esa Korkeamäki, Partner at HH Partners, Head of IP practice, and Maria Rehbinder, Legal Counsel, IPR Services of Art Universities, Aalto University. The review at this stage mainly concentrated on reviewing the most important terminological, structural and conceptual choices, as well as improving the language of the translation in terms of intelligibility, clarity and consistence.

For the public commenting period, the draft was published on The notice for commenting went out to the Finnish government, the open data networks, cultural institutions, and copyright agencies.



  • Tarmo Toikkanen, Aalto University: general coordinator of CC Finland
  • Maria Rehbinder, Aalto University: legal councel, license translation coordinator of CC Finland
  • Henri Tanskanen, Associate, HH Partners, Attorneys-at-law Ltd: main translator (contracted by CC Finland)
  • Martin von Willebrand, Attorney-at-Law and Partner, HH Partners, Attorneys-at-law: translation supervision (contracted by CC Finland)
  • Liisa Laakso-Tammisto, translator (authorized)

Word choice
Here, we have attempted to summarize the most important challenges we have faced during the translation process, including challenges related to the process and policy in general, as well as the most crucial individual issues related to terminology etc. A summary of the most essential translation choices can be found below after this section.

General issues

There were some general challenges with English legal language that are typical for any comparable translation task. Legal texts in English differ from their counterparts in Finnish in various ways, some of which have to do with differences in legal systems and legal culture, and some of which relate to linguistic differences and different ways of expression. In Finnish legal texts, sentences expressing rules and/or terms and conditions are usually perhaps slightly briefer and structurally simpler mainly due to two factors. First, as opposed to common law contract drafting style, Finnish law allows for somewhat less detailed definitions and other formulations as well as perhaps slightly more purpose-oriented interpretation of stipulations, resulting in lesser use of e.g. lists, alternative phrases or forms as well as less extensive consideration of every possible incident and course of events. Second, the structure of terms and conditions can be slightly different, and sentences are typically shorter. English legal terms and conditions can in some respects be difficult to reconstruct in Finnish in the exact same form, or at least it can result in uneasy and unnatural-sounding sentences with excessive repetitive elements.

Based on the given instructions, we have strived to keep the structure and boundaries of the sentences as close to the original as possible. This has resulted in some sentences and paragraphs that are slightly more uneasy and repetitive than they would have been had we taken more liberties in formulating the terms and conditions more in line with Finnish legal texts and culture.

The original text includes some phrases and concepts which do not have an equivalent among Finnish legal concepts (e.g. punitive damages). There are also some concepts which are included as separate terms in the original text but which correspond, in Finnish, to only one translated concept (e.g. punitive and exemplary damages fall into the same translated concept). In our translation, we have tried to stick to the original categorization as much as possible, i.e. finding an established individual expression for each individual concept. However, we have made some exceptions where 1) the Finnish translation requires a longer phrase to encompass the original meaning, or 2) we have felt confident that a single Finnish wording encompasses a range of several concepts in the original text in a clear-cut way.

Individual terminology issues

Some of the most important individual terminology and phrase choices:

  1. “License”, noun: The term “license” has two established translations in Finnish, namely, “lisenssi” and “käyttölupa” (literally, “permit to use”). “Käyttölupa” is commonly used in various official translations of EU legislation, e.g. the PSI Directive (2003/98/EC). “Lisenssi”, however, is not uncommon in EU law context either, and especially for the verb “license”, the Finnish translation very commonly uses the form derived from “lisenssi” (“lisens[i]oida”). Both “käyttölupa” and “lisenssi” are common in Finnish-language license contracts. Although we have no empirical data on the subject, we estimate that “lisenssi” is especially common in the business community and in business contracts, whereas the prevalence of “käyttölupa” is perhaps relatively higher in public sector contexts. In the media and layman use, “lisenssi” is far more common, and this is especially true for Creative Commons licenses. After some discussion, we opted for “lisenssi” (noun) and “lisensoida” (verb).
  2. “Copyright and Similar Rights”: We have translated “Similar Rights” as “Samankaltaiset Oikeudet” which is a literal translation (“samankaltaiset” = similar; of the same kind) without any connotation or reference related to any specific concept under Finnish law (such as “neighboring rights” or “related rights”). This approach should be conformant to the English version which was chosen deliberately to be broader than “neighboring” or “related rights”. The adopted approach should also allow the inclusion of other rights outside the defined set of neighboring/related rights under any specific jurisdiction or copyright regime.
  3. “Apply”: The verb “apply” as it is used in the license text (esp. when “applying the license), would usually be translated as “soveltaa”. However, the verb “soveltaa” can, in some contexts, be understood and translated as “to adapt” or “to apply with changes”. If “soveltaa” were used, we consider it is quite clear from the context that it would not be understood to include the afore-mentioned connotation. However, to eliminate any possible doubt or misinterpretation, we have in some instances opted for a different translation, e.g. “käyttää” (nearest correspondent “to use”). So, for example the phrase “the Adapter's License You apply” has, in the translation, a literal meaning very close to “the Adapter's License You use”.
  4. “For purposes of this Public License”: There is no exact and established translation for this phrase in Finnish legal texts. To convey the corresponding meaning, we have translated the construct of “For purposes of this Public License … X is Y” as something corresponding to “When using [/applying] and interpreting this Public License … X shall be considered as Y”).

Translation choices for key terms and concepts

Below, you will find a list of what are, in our opinion, the most essential translation choices for individual expressions made in the course of this work, along with a description indicating the justification for and the criteria used in the translation. Please note, however, that the translation worksheet contains some additional and expanded notes on the individual choices, as well.

original work of authorship
luovan työn itsenäinen ja omaperäinen tulos
Literally: an independent and original product of creative work. This is the established and customary definition of a copyrightable work under Finnish law and in Finnish legal literature. As this is not part of the actual legal code, we felt comfortable with the slight deviation from the original wording.
Literally: author, creator.
Berne Convention, official translation
Similar Rights
Samankaltaiset Oikeudet
See notes above.
make available to the public
saattaa yleisön saataviin
Copyright Directive (2001/29/EC), official translation
valmistaa kappaleita
Copyright Directive (2001/29/EC), official translation
Berne Convention, official translation
Berne Convention, official translation
Berne Convention, official translation
näyttää, näyttäminen
Finnish Copyright Act, Section 20.
communicate, communication
välittää, välittäminen
Berne Convention, official translation
disseminate, dissemination
jakaa, jakaminen
Exception: In Berne Convention, official translation, both distribution and dissemination have been translated as “levittäminen”. Here, we have instead chosen a term (“jakaminen”) which has essentially the same meaning.
translate, translation
kääntää, käännös
Berne Convention, official translation
Berne Convention, official translation
Berne Convention, official translation
performance, broadcast (and) sound recording (rights)
esityksiä, lähetyksiä (ja) äänitallenteita (koskevat oikeudet)
Performance: Berne Convention, official translation
Broadcast: Deviation from Berne Convention, official translation. The term used in the Berne Convention translation (“yleisradiointi”) sounds dated and may even be accidentally associated by the reader with public service broadcasting, specifically. We have opted for “lähetys” (generic word for broadcast, transmission, relay) which is used in the Finnish Copyright Act (section on neighbouring right related to radio and TV broadcasts and other transmissions/signals carrying programming).
moral rights
moraaliset oikeudet
Berne Convention, official translation
publicity and privacy rights
henkilön oikeus määrätä nimensä, kuvansa tai henkilönsä muun tunnistettavan osan kaupallisesta käytöstä (right of publicity), yksityisyyden suojaa koskevat oikeudet
Literally: “the right of an individual to control the commercial use of his or her name, image [depiction, picture] or other recognizable aspects of one's persona (right of publicity), rights concerning the protection of privacy” …
In our proposition, we have attempted to strike a balance between accurately conveying the meaning of the original expression and keeping the translation intelligible to a Finnish reader interpreting the license in the context of Finnish law and Finnish legal concepts. As we have concluded that there is no exact translation for the concept, we have used a longer descriptive phrase and an English term quoted for clarity. We feel that the proposal appropriately describes and conveys the meaning of the original concept but at the same time helps the interpreter understand what rights under Finnish law would be included in such group of “personality rights”, as defined in the license text.
extraction (of data)
Database Directive (96/9/EC), official translation
dissemination (of data)
Not used in the Database Directive. Literal translation; “levitys” is the proper choice especially here where the object (of dissemination) consists of information.
use; reuse (of data)
käyttö; uudelleenkäyttö
Database Directive (96/9/EC), official translation
reproduce (contents of the database)
Database Directive (96/9/EC), official translation
database rights
Established in Finnish legal literature.
Effective Technological Measures
Tehokkaat Tekniset Toimenpiteet
Established expression under Finnish law (legislation, literature).
The established Finnish expression used when waiving any rights.

The license translation will be finalized in October 2014. This summary of the translation process is mainly written by Henri Tanskanen.

Status (as of)