Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

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Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Renata St
It was raised before on the Village Pump, but I think this is so disturbing
that we ought to do something.

"Alphascript Publishing" has published over 1900 (and counting) books, all
available on Amazon. Prices range from $31 to $179. All of these books are
simple computer-generated copies from Wikipedia and (at least according to
one Amazon reviewer) couple other public domain websites. Trouble is, from
book description page there is absolutely no way of knowing that the book is
a Wikipedia mirror on paper. At least several Amazon buyers have been
fooled. What really gets my blood boiling is that Amazon user "VDM Verlag
Dr.Müller" (I think someone exposed him as 100% shareholder of the
publishing co) goes on rating these products as "five star"....

The publisher seems to observe the copyright (even includes full edit
history) so legal action seems impossible. Someone already contacted Amazon,
but they "are not responsible for the quality of books sold". In the
meantime the number of such books grew from 900 in June to almost 2000 as of
today... I think we should do something. At the very least publishing
product reviews warning that what this is....

See:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:PrimeHunter/Alphascript_Publishing_sells_free_articles_as_expensive_books
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_(miscellaneous)/Archive_20#The_Alphascript-Amazon-Wikipedia_book_hoax
http://rufftoon.livejournal.com/59337.html

Thanks,
Renata

P.S. on a happier note: half of Wikipedia editors now can claim to be
"published authors".
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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Joshua Gay-2
When I worked for the FSF I helped to run a campaign against the
Amazon Kindle (and, DRM in general). We did an action called "The
Kindle Swindle" in which we asked people to tag all DRM ebooks and the
kindle itself with the tags "kindle swindle" and "DRM".

People went ahead and tagged close to a thousand products with the
term "Kindle Swindle" and the Kindle advice was tagged with that
phrase close to 400 times making it become one of the top four tags on
the Kindle page.

What is kind of neat is that for each tag-term has its own discussion
forum. The "Kindle Swindle" tag has a relatively active set of
discussion threads [1], and the original comment I wrote [2] has over
250 replies to it.

I imagine some combination of blogging, tagging, and letter writing
could help in some way to increase consumer awareness and this kind of
work can be done in a distributed fashion by wikimedians worldwide.

footnotes
:[1] http://www.amazon.com/tag/kindle%20swindle?ref_=tag_dpp_cust_itdp_t
:[2] http://www.amazon.com/tag/kindle%20swindle/forum/ref=cm_cd_ef_tft_tp?_encoding=UTF8&cdForum=Fx9U9IIOS8R4U3&cdThread=TxEMQ1LM199AP8&displayType=tagsDetail


On Thu, Aug 13, 2009 at 6:10 PM, Renata St<[hidden email]> wrote:

> It was raised before on the Village Pump, but I think this is so disturbing
> that we ought to do something.
>
> "Alphascript Publishing" has published over 1900 (and counting) books, all
> available on Amazon. Prices range from $31 to $179. All of these books are
> simple computer-generated copies from Wikipedia and (at least according to
> one Amazon reviewer) couple other public domain websites. Trouble is, from
> book description page there is absolutely no way of knowing that the book is
> a Wikipedia mirror on paper. At least several Amazon buyers have been
> fooled. What really gets my blood boiling is that Amazon user "VDM Verlag
> Dr.Müller" (I think someone exposed him as 100% shareholder of the
> publishing co) goes on rating these products as "five star"....
>
> The publisher seems to observe the copyright (even includes full edit
> history) so legal action seems impossible. Someone already contacted Amazon,
> but they "are not responsible for the quality of books sold". In the
> meantime the number of such books grew from 900 in June to almost 2000 as of
> today... I think we should do something. At the very least publishing
> product reviews warning that what this is....
>
> See:
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:PrimeHunter/Alphascript_Publishing_sells_free_articles_as_expensive_books
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_(miscellaneous)/Archive_20#The_Alphascript-Amazon-Wikipedia_book_hoax
> http://rufftoon.livejournal.com/59337.html
>
> Thanks,
> Renata
>
> P.S. on a happier note: half of Wikipedia editors now can claim to be
> "published authors".
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>



--
I am running the Arizona Rock'n'Roll marathon with Team in Training.
Help me reach my fundraising goals:
http://pages.teamintraining.org/ma/pfchangs10/joshuagay

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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

David Goodman
I would be exceedingly uncomfortable with us organizing a negative
campaign against any publisher not actually violating our copyright.
.  A factual campaign, providing information is another matter. It
would be entirely appropriate for individuals, even in a somewhat
coordinated way, to add a review, just pointing out that it is
entirely a copy of a Wikipedia article, and available free in  an
updated version from our website--and in updated form.


David Goodman, Ph.D, M.L.S.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User_talk:DGG



On Thu, Aug 13, 2009 at 6:47 PM, Joshua Gay<[hidden email]> wrote:

> When I worked for the FSF I helped to run a campaign against the
> Amazon Kindle (and, DRM in general). We did an action called "The
> Kindle Swindle" in which we asked people to tag all DRM ebooks and the
> kindle itself with the tags "kindle swindle" and "DRM".
>
> People went ahead and tagged close to a thousand products with the
> term "Kindle Swindle" and the Kindle advice was tagged with that
> phrase close to 400 times making it become one of the top four tags on
> the Kindle page.
>
> What is kind of neat is that for each tag-term has its own discussion
> forum. The "Kindle Swindle" tag has a relatively active set of
> discussion threads [1], and the original comment I wrote [2] has over
> 250 replies to it.
>
> I imagine some combination of blogging, tagging, and letter writing
> could help in some way to increase consumer awareness and this kind of
> work can be done in a distributed fashion by wikimedians worldwide.
>
> footnotes
> :[1] http://www.amazon.com/tag/kindle%20swindle?ref_=tag_dpp_cust_itdp_t
> :[2] http://www.amazon.com/tag/kindle%20swindle/forum/ref=cm_cd_ef_tft_tp?_encoding=UTF8&cdForum=Fx9U9IIOS8R4U3&cdThread=TxEMQ1LM199AP8&displayType=tagsDetail
>
>
> On Thu, Aug 13, 2009 at 6:10 PM, Renata St<[hidden email]> wrote:
>> It was raised before on the Village Pump, but I think this is so disturbing
>> that we ought to do something.
>>
>> "Alphascript Publishing" has published over 1900 (and counting) books, all
>> available on Amazon. Prices range from $31 to $179. All of these books are
>> simple computer-generated copies from Wikipedia and (at least according to
>> one Amazon reviewer) couple other public domain websites. Trouble is, from
>> book description page there is absolutely no way of knowing that the book is
>> a Wikipedia mirror on paper. At least several Amazon buyers have been
>> fooled. What really gets my blood boiling is that Amazon user "VDM Verlag
>> Dr.Müller" (I think someone exposed him as 100% shareholder of the
>> publishing co) goes on rating these products as "five star"....
>>
>> The publisher seems to observe the copyright (even includes full edit
>> history) so legal action seems impossible. Someone already contacted Amazon,
>> but they "are not responsible for the quality of books sold". In the
>> meantime the number of such books grew from 900 in June to almost 2000 as of
>> today... I think we should do something. At the very least publishing
>> product reviews warning that what this is....
>>
>> See:
>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:PrimeHunter/Alphascript_Publishing_sells_free_articles_as_expensive_books
>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_(miscellaneous)/Archive_20#The_Alphascript-Amazon-Wikipedia_book_hoax
>> http://rufftoon.livejournal.com/59337.html
>>
>> Thanks,
>> Renata
>>
>> P.S. on a happier note: half of Wikipedia editors now can claim to be
>> "published authors".
>> _______________________________________________
>> foundation-l mailing list
>> [hidden email]
>> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>>
>
>
>
> --
> I am running the Arizona Rock'n'Roll marathon with Team in Training.
> Help me reach my fundraising goals:
> http://pages.teamintraining.org/ma/pfchangs10/joshuagay
>
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>

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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Renata St
That was kinda my point.
They "deceive" potential buyers into thinking it's an original book/content
without disclosing that it's just a copy from Wikipedia. There are
disclaimers inside the book -- but that comes only after opening the wallet.
Someone should put it up front.

On Thu, Aug 13, 2009 at 6:56 PM, David Goodman <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I would be exceedingly uncomfortable with us organizing a negative
> campaign against any publisher not actually violating our copyright.
> .  A factual campaign, providing information is another matter. It
> would be entirely appropriate for individuals, even in a somewhat
> coordinated way, to add a review, just pointing out that it is
> entirely a copy of a Wikipedia article, and available free in  an
> updated version from our website--and in updated form.
>
>
> David Goodman, Ph.D, M.L.S.
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User_talk:DGG
>
>
>
> On Thu, Aug 13, 2009 at 6:47 PM, Joshua Gay<[hidden email]> wrote:
> > When I worked for the FSF I helped to run a campaign against the
> > Amazon Kindle (and, DRM in general). We did an action called "The
> > Kindle Swindle" in which we asked people to tag all DRM ebooks and the
> > kindle itself with the tags "kindle swindle" and "DRM".
> >
> > People went ahead and tagged close to a thousand products with the
> > term "Kindle Swindle" and the Kindle advice was tagged with that
> > phrase close to 400 times making it become one of the top four tags on
> > the Kindle page.
> >
> > What is kind of neat is that for each tag-term has its own discussion
> > forum. The "Kindle Swindle" tag has a relatively active set of
> > discussion threads [1], and the original comment I wrote [2] has over
> > 250 replies to it.
> >
> > I imagine some combination of blogging, tagging, and letter writing
> > could help in some way to increase consumer awareness and this kind of
> > work can be done in a distributed fashion by wikimedians worldwide.
> >
> > footnotes
> > :[1] http://www.amazon.com/tag/kindle%20swindle?ref_=tag_dpp_cust_itdp_t
> > :[2]
> http://www.amazon.com/tag/kindle%20swindle/forum/ref=cm_cd_ef_tft_tp?_encoding=UTF8&cdForum=Fx9U9IIOS8R4U3&cdThread=TxEMQ1LM199AP8&displayType=tagsDetail
> >
> >
> > On Thu, Aug 13, 2009 at 6:10 PM, Renata St<[hidden email]> wrote:
> >> It was raised before on the Village Pump, but I think this is so
> disturbing
> >> that we ought to do something.
> >>
> >> "Alphascript Publishing" has published over 1900 (and counting) books,
> all
> >> available on Amazon. Prices range from $31 to $179. All of these books
> are
> >> simple computer-generated copies from Wikipedia and (at least according
> to
> >> one Amazon reviewer) couple other public domain websites. Trouble is,
> from
> >> book description page there is absolutely no way of knowing that the
> book is
> >> a Wikipedia mirror on paper. At least several Amazon buyers have been
> >> fooled. What really gets my blood boiling is that Amazon user "VDM
> Verlag
> >> Dr.Müller" (I think someone exposed him as 100% shareholder of the
> >> publishing co) goes on rating these products as "five star"....
> >>
> >> The publisher seems to observe the copyright (even includes full edit
> >> history) so legal action seems impossible. Someone already contacted
> Amazon,
> >> but they "are not responsible for the quality of books sold". In the
> >> meantime the number of such books grew from 900 in June to almost 2000
> as of
> >> today... I think we should do something. At the very least publishing
> >> product reviews warning that what this is....
> >>
> >> See:
> >>
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:PrimeHunter/Alphascript_Publishing_sells_free_articles_as_expensive_books
> >>
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_(miscellaneous)/Archive_20#The_Alphascript-Amazon-Wikipedia_book_hoax<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_%28miscellaneous%29/Archive_20#The_Alphascript-Amazon-Wikipedia_book_hoax>
> >> http://rufftoon.livejournal.com/59337.html
> >>
> >> Thanks,
> >> Renata
> >>
> >> P.S. on a happier note: half of Wikipedia editors now can claim to be
> >> "published authors".
> >> _______________________________________________
> >> foundation-l mailing list
> >> [hidden email]
> >> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
> >>
> >
> >
> >
> > --
> > I am running the Arizona Rock'n'Roll marathon with Team in Training.
> > Help me reach my fundraising goals:
> > http://pages.teamintraining.org/ma/pfchangs10/joshuagay
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > foundation-l mailing list
> > [hidden email]
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
> >
>
> _______________________________________________
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> [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>
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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Ray Saintonge
In reply to this post by David Goodman
David Goodman wrote:
> I would be exceedingly uncomfortable with us organizing a negative
> campaign against any publisher not actually violating our copyright.
> .  A factual campaign, providing information is another matter. It
> would be entirely appropriate for individuals, even in a somewhat
> coordinated way, to add a review, just pointing out that it is
> entirely a copy of a Wikipedia article, and available free in  an
> updated version from our website--and in updated form.
>  

It may still be violating moral rights, which are a part of the
copyright law even though no penalties are provided.  There could also
be a case for fraudulent misrepresentation.

Another alternative might be for Wikimedians to put together a company
that would sell similar books to the public at cost, perhaps on a print
on demand basis so as to get the latest versions.  Article selection
might be the same, and they could even use identical titles for each
book, but there would be no deception about where the material comes from.

Ec

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Re: [WikiEN-l] Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Renata St
In reply to this post by Renata St
The main issue is *deception*. There is no disclaimer anywhere (except
inside the book) that this is a copy from Wikipedia or somewhere else.
People are tricked into believing that this is original content by the three
listed editors. It almost got tricked myself... and it came out that I wrote
13 articles out of 48 included in that book. I figured something is fishy
only because I recognized the titles. I would espect average Joe, not
intimately familiar with Wikipedia, to fall for that. Especially when you
see another happy customer rating it five stars for "great collection of
information"...

I am not objecting to publishing Wikipedia. If someone wants to put an
honest effort into producing Wikipedia CDs/DVDs/books -- more power to them.
But please label in big clear letters "copied from Wikipedia" on the cover
for everyone to see. I know German Wikipedia was published on a DVD -- I
have zero objections to that. I also know that the "book extension" to
mediawiki was added exactly for this purpose. But in this particular case I
think it's rather abusive.

Renata

On Thu, Aug 13, 2009 at 6:22 PM, <[hidden email]> wrote:

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Renata St <[hidden email]>
> To: English Wikipedia <[hidden email]>; Wikimedia
> Foundation Mailing List <[hidden email]>
> Sent: Thu, Aug 13, 2009 3:10 pm
> Subject: [WikiEN-l] Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books
> from Wikipedia
>
>
> It was raised before on the Village Pump, but I think this is so
> disturbing
> that we ought to do something.
>
> "Alphascript Publishing" has published over 1900 (and counting) books,
> all
> available on Amazon. Prices range from $31 to $179. All of these books
> are
> simple computer-generated copies from Wikipedia and (at least according
> to
> one Amazon reviewer) couple other public domain websites. Trouble is,
> from
> book description page there is absolutely no way of knowing that the
> book is
> a Wikipedia mirror on paper. At least several Amazon buyers have been
> fooled. What really gets my blood boiling is that Amazon user "VDM
> Verlag
> Dr.Müller" (I think someone exposed him as 100% shareholder of the
> publishing co) goes on rating these products as "five star"....
>
> The publisher seems to observe the copyright (even includes full edit
> history) so legal action seems impossible. Someone already contacted
> Amazon,
> but they "are not responsible for the quality of books sold". In the
> meantime the number of such books grew from 900 in June to almost 2000
> as of
> today... I think we should do something. At the very least publishing
> product reviews wa
> rning that what this is....
>
> See:
>
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:PrimeHunter/Alphascript_Publishing_sells_free_articles_as_expensive_books
>
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_(miscellaneous)/Archive_20#The_Alphascript-Amazon-Wikipedia_book_hoax<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_%28miscellaneous%29/Archive_20#The_Alphascript-Amazon-Wikipedia_book_hoax>
> http://rufftoon.livejournal.com/59337.html
>
> Thanks,
> Renata
>
> P.S. on a happier note: half of Wikipedia editors now can claim to be
> "published authors".>>
> _______________________________________________
>
>
> Renata I'm not sure to what you're objecting.
> Our contents are republishable.  The author is certainly free to rate
> his own work five stars.
> What's the issue here?
>
> Will Johnson
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> WikiEN-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> To unsubscribe from this mailing list, visit:
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikien-l
>
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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Nikola Smolenski
In reply to this post by Renata St
Renata St wrote:
> They "deceive" potential buyers into thinking it's an original book/content
> without disclosing that it's just a copy from Wikipedia. There are
> disclaimers inside the book -- but that comes only after opening the wallet.
> Someone should put it up front.

I don't know if they commonly do it but at least at
http://amazon.decenturl.com/amazon.com-prehistoric-europe they openly
say it's from Wikipedia.

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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Marco Chiesa
On Fri, Aug 14, 2009 at 8:49 AM, Nikola Smolenski<[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> I don't know if they commonly do it but at least at
> http://amazon.decenturl.com/amazon.com-prehistoric-europe they openly
> say it's from Wikipedia.
>
And still by reading that review you get the impression that they're
building upon wikipedia articles giving a more up-to-date version :)
I'm glad they respect the license at least.
In Italy we recently discovered a similar case, with a guy writing
books copying verbatim wikipedia articles. He didn't respect the
license, selling the content as his own copyright, however. The funny
thing was that he forgot at least one "Citation needed" tag, so we had
a lot of fun at it.wp Village Pump
http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Bar/Discussioni/Un_libro_fatto_con_wikipedia_e_i_%22citazione_necessaria%22
What one of us did was to put a review saying "Don't buy this book,
it's a copy from Wikipedia". The book was retracted from the website a
few days afterwards.

Cruccone

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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Gerard Meijssen-3
In reply to this post by Renata St
Hoi,
As long as the books give sufficient indication that they are from
Wikipedia, as long as the license requirement is met, this gentlemen is
welcome to ask as much as people are willing to pay. If anything this is
EXACTLY something that we can do as well. The German Verein did a good job a
few years back with publishing its own books.

It is fine that you do not like it. When you agitate against this do realise
that it has been said often enough that commercial parties are welcome to do
this. If you want to do better, you can, and when you feel that it needs to
be more clear where the content comes from, you will make that more clear as
well.
Thanks,
      GerardM

2009/8/14 Renata St <[hidden email]>

> It was raised before on the Village Pump, but I think this is so disturbing
> that we ought to do something.
>
> "Alphascript Publishing" has published over 1900 (and counting) books, all
> available on Amazon. Prices range from $31 to $179. All of these books are
> simple computer-generated copies from Wikipedia and (at least according to
> one Amazon reviewer) couple other public domain websites. Trouble is, from
> book description page there is absolutely no way of knowing that the book
> is
> a Wikipedia mirror on paper. At least several Amazon buyers have been
> fooled. What really gets my blood boiling is that Amazon user "VDM Verlag
> Dr.Müller" (I think someone exposed him as 100% shareholder of the
> publishing co) goes on rating these products as "five star"....
>
> The publisher seems to observe the copyright (even includes full edit
> history) so legal action seems impossible. Someone already contacted
> Amazon,
> but they "are not responsible for the quality of books sold". In the
> meantime the number of such books grew from 900 in June to almost 2000 as
> of
> today... I think we should do something. At the very least publishing
> product reviews warning that what this is....
>
> See:
>
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:PrimeHunter/Alphascript_Publishing_sells_free_articles_as_expensive_books
>
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_(miscellaneous)/Archive_20#The_Alphascript-Amazon-Wikipedia_book_hoax<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_%28miscellaneous%29/Archive_20#The_Alphascript-Amazon-Wikipedia_book_hoax>
> http://rufftoon.livejournal.com/59337.html
>
> Thanks,
> Renata
>
> P.S. on a happier note: half of Wikipedia editors now can claim to be
> "published authors".
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>
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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

David Gerard-2
In reply to this post by David Goodman
2009/8/13 David Goodman <[hidden email]>:

> I would be exceedingly uncomfortable with us organizing a negative
> campaign against any publisher not actually violating our copyright.
> .  A factual campaign, providing information is another matter. It
> would be entirely appropriate for individuals, even in a somewhat
> coordinated way, to add a review, just pointing out that it is
> entirely a copy of a Wikipedia article, and available free in  an
> updated version from our website--and in updated form.


"The contents of this book are reprinted from Wikipedia. Thanks to Dr
--- for making Wikipedia content available commercially in printed
form, in full observance of copyright requirements. We do this to
spread knowledge, after all!"


- d.

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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Renata St
In reply to this post by Gerard Meijssen-3
>
> As long as the books give sufficient indication that they are from
> Wikipedia, ...


Inside the book -- yes, plenty of indication about copying. But nothing to
warn you before you buy. People are buying these books tricked into thinking
it's an original content.
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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

David Gerard-2
2009/8/14 Renata St <[hidden email]>:

>> As long as the books give sufficient indication that they are from
>> Wikipedia, ...

> Inside the book -- yes, plenty of indication about copying. But nothing to
> warn you before you buy. People are buying these books tricked into thinking
> it's an original content.


Yuh. Point it out in reviews etc.


- d.

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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Renata St
In reply to this post by Ray Saintonge
>
> Another alternative might be for Wikimedians to put together a company
> that would sell similar books to the public at cost, perhaps on a print
> on demand basis so as to get the latest versions.  Article selection
> might be the same, and they could even use identical titles for each
> book, but there would be no deception about where the material comes from.


Already done: PediaPress.
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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Renata St
In reply to this post by David Gerard-2
>
>  >> As long as the books give sufficient indication that they are from
> >> Wikipedia, ...
>
> > Inside the book -- yes, plenty of indication about copying. But nothing
> to
> > warn you before you buy. People are buying these books tricked into
> thinking
> > it's an original content.
>
> Yuh. Point it out in reviews etc.
>
Exactly, except that there are 2000 such books. Amazon would block me for
spamming (irony!) if I attempted to review all of them.
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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

David Gerard-2
2009/8/14 Renata St <[hidden email]>:

>> > Inside the book -- yes, plenty of indication about copying. But nothing
>> to
>> > warn you before you buy. People are buying these books tricked into
>> thinking
>> > it's an original content.

>> Yuh. Point it out in reviews etc.

> Exactly, except that there are 2000 such books. Amazon would block me for
> spamming (irony!) if I attempted to review all of them.


Hah. Put up a blog entry or web page detailing your concern and asking
others to help?


- d.

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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Renata St
On Fri, Aug 14, 2009 at 1:20 PM, David Gerard <[hidden email]> wrote:

> 2009/8/14 Renata St <[hidden email]>:
>
> >> > Inside the book -- yes, plenty of indication about copying. But
> nothing
> >> to
> >> > warn you before you buy. People are buying these books tricked into
> >> thinking
> >> > it's an original content.
>
> >> Yuh. Point it out in reviews etc.
>
> > Exactly, except that there are 2000 such books. Amazon would block me for
> > spamming (irony!) if I attempted to review all of them.
>
>
> Hah. Put up a blog entry or web page detailing your concern and asking
> others to help?


Or email to two interested mailing lists?...
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Re: [WikiEN-l] Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Robert S. Horning
In reply to this post by Renata St
Renata St wrote:

> I am not objecting to publishing Wikipedia. If someone wants to put an
> honest effort into producing Wikipedia CDs/DVDs/books -- more power to them.
> But please label in big clear letters "copied from Wikipedia" on the cover
> for everyone to see. I know German Wikipedia was published on a DVD -- I
> have zero objections to that. I also know that the "book extension" to
> mediawiki was added exactly for this purpose. But in this particular case I
> think it's rather abusive.
>
> Renata
>  

Wading into this discussion with a firesuit, I'd like to point out that
my own experience in publishing a book based on content from a Wikimedia
project (in my case it was the print publication of the Wikijunior Big
Cats book on Wikibooks) I had a pretty nasty response from the WMF board
in regards to the use of any Wikimedia trademark that I am gun shy from
even mentioning that the content might have even a mention of a
Wikimedia "trademark" like "Wikipedia".

I'll admit that I made some mistakes in creating that book, including an
assumption that the WMF could be listed as one of the "authors" and the
nebulous issue of the use of the working title of the book on Wikibooks,
which used the name "Wikijunior" prominently on the cover (presumably
one of the invariant sections under the GFDL.... depending on how you
interpreted that clause).  Even so, the deliberate actions of the WMF
board in this case killed this particular effort to independently
publish on paper content from at least one Wikimedia project.

I acknowledge that about the only real asset that the WMF has to work
with in terms of fund raising is the licensing of their trademarks.  
Unfortunately, even now, the formal WMF policies in terms of when and
where these trademarks might legitimately be used by 3rd parties without
formally entering into a legal contract with the WMF is quite ambiguous
and more akin to wondering what the legal limits of using any commercial
trademark like "Coca-Cola" might be (is this even an illegal use of
trademark)?

 From this experience, it is to me no small wonder that somebody trying
to republish content from Wikipedia might even have some formal legal
advise to simply not even mention that the content came from Wikipedia
or any other Wikimedia website, and try to abide by the most strict
interpretation of the content licensing (GFDL/CC-by-SA, ect.) that does
exist.

In my case, I would like to acknowledge the role of the WMF and the
specific projects like Wikipedia, Wikinews, or Wikibooks that
publications like this came from.  But once burned, it becomes hard to
come back and try again.

No, I am not affiliated with Alphascript either, although it sounds like
something I wouldn't mind trying to duplicate at some point in the
future.  As I said, I even tried.

-- Robert Horning
____________________________________________________________
Workers Compensation Legal Advice. Click here
http://thirdpartyoffers.netzero.net/TGL2241/fc/BLSrjpYbk8p42wmusnomBznPalOWFuy7YCuE5JzOMZoqO9Pz0bKTxAC6Xvy/

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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Jay Litwyn-2
In reply to this post by Renata St
Maybe there should be a [[:category:printed articles]]. It should ignore
personal and educational use with a note at the top saying "Alphascript
Publishing used this article in whole or major part for a commercial
printing of Wikipedia.". It would be nice of them to create the category and
make it complete.




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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Peter Coombe
2009/8/17 Jay Litwyn <[hidden email]>:
> Maybe there should be a [[:category:printed articles]]. It should ignore
> personal and educational use with a note at the top saying "Alphascript
> Publishing used this article in whole or major part for a commercial
> printing of Wikipedia.". It would be nice of them to create the category and
> make it complete.
>

Huh? The last thing we should be doing is advertising them like that,
especially in the encyclopedia.


Pete / the wub

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Re: Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

Geoffrey Plourde
The single best way to kill them is to reprint the exact same books, then sell them at the low low price of cost + 10%. When people start snapping them up like fruitcakes, Alphascript will be finished.




________________________________
From: Peter Coombe <[hidden email]>
To: Wikimedia Foundation Mailing List <[hidden email]>
Sent: Monday, August 17, 2009 6:08:55 AM
Subject: Re: [Foundation-l] Alphascript Publishing: 1900+ copy&pasted books from Wikipedia

2009/8/17 Jay Litwyn <[hidden email]>:
> Maybe there should be a [[:category:printed articles]]. It should ignore
> personal and educational use with a note at the top saying "Alphascript
> Publishing used this article in whole or major part for a commercial
> printing of Wikipedia.". It would be nice of them to create the category and
> make it complete.
>

Huh? The last thing we should be doing is advertising them like that,
especially in the encyclopedia.


Pete / the wub

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