Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

Nikola Smolenski
On Friday 01 August 2008 06:01:08 David Goodman wrote:

> Everything we do beyond this is a practical restriction on the use of
> our content. Rather than making it free in any real sense of the word
> except the artificiality of copyleft, it makes it less free. Freedom
> with respect to intellectual property is the opportunity to take
> intellectual content and do what you will with it. Free material is
> material you can us for your own purposes, whatever they may be. (and
> I point out that putting restrictive licenses on something and
> republishing it does not destroy the underlying freedom; you can claim
> what copyright you want to claim, but it doesn't mean you have it.
> People do this with PD US government material routinely.)

No. You are not free to make free content nonfree. I do not want to see things
I wrote claimed as copyrighted by someone else, claimed to be not free or,
the worst, translated and enhanced and claimed nonfree (which has actually
happened).

> we want to do, and find a legal way of doing it.  I'm not one, but I
> think  the easiest legal way is to change our license to the freest
> possible, and give people the right to ask that the content they
> contributed under another assumption be withdrawn and their text
> rewritten. If we need to rewrite two paragraphs a year, which is what
> i expect, i hereby offer to do it.

And if by "the freest possible" you mean CC-BY, I hereby offer to revert you.

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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

David Goodman
Anything anybody writes can claim to be copyrighted by somebody else,
so you might as well get used to the idea. Whether the claim is valid
is another matter.

On Fri, Aug 1, 2008 at 9:29 AM, Nikola Smolenski <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Friday 01 August 2008 06:01:08 David Goodman wrote:
>> Everything we do beyond this is a practical restriction on the use of
>> our content. Rather than making it free in any real sense of the word
>> except the artificiality of copyleft, it makes it less free. Freedom
>> with respect to intellectual property is the opportunity to take
>> intellectual content and do what you will with it. Free material is
>> material you can us for your own purposes, whatever they may be. (and
>> I point out that putting restrictive licenses on something and
>> republishing it does not destroy the underlying freedom; you can claim
>> what copyright you want to claim, but it doesn't mean you have it.
>> People do this with PD US government material routinely.)
>
> No. You are not free to make free content nonfree. I do not want to see things
> I wrote claimed as copyrighted by someone else, claimed to be not free or,
> the worst, translated and enhanced and claimed nonfree (which has actually
> happened).

Anything anybody writes can claim to be copyrighted by somebody else,
so you might as well get used to the idea. Whether the claim is valid
is another matter.

>
>> we want to do, and find a legal way of doing it.  I'm not one, but I
>> think  the easiest legal way is to change our license to the freest
>> possible, and give people the right to ask that the content they
>> contributed under another assumption be withdrawn and their text
>> rewritten. If we need to rewrite two paragraphs a year, which is what
>> i expect, i hereby offer to do it.
>
> And if by "the freest possible" you mean CC-BY, I hereby offer to revert you.

I must misunderstand you. I can rewrite anything or anyone has ever
posted on wp and doing so to avoid a claimed or even a possible
copyright violation is one of the best reasons for doing so, whether
or not there is an actual copyvio.

If you mean I propose to change the rules personally, I know perfectly
well that I cannot do this.

>
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User_talk:DGG

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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

Nikola Smolenski
On Friday 01 August 2008 19:31:06 David Goodman wrote:
> > No. You are not free to make free content nonfree. I do not want to see
> > things I wrote claimed as copyrighted by someone else, claimed to be not
> > free or, the worst, translated and enhanced and claimed nonfree (which
> > has actually happened).
>
> Anything anybody writes can claim to be copyrighted by somebody else,
> so you might as well get used to the idea. Whether the claim is valid
> is another matter.

I am used to the idea, and I am actively opposing it.

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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

Robert Rohde
In reply to this post by David Goodman
David,

You are advocating a view of what freedom should mean.  Being free to do
absolutely ANYTHING with Wikipedia content as long as you attribute it to
Wikipedia is a perfectly respectable view.

However, there is segment of the community, myself included, that doesn't
feel comfortable with that level of radical freedom.  Maybe I'm cynical, but
I don't really want to donate my time and energy to a project if it is
likely that someone else will pick it up, add a few widgets and a little
text, and exploit it for private financial gain while give nothing back to
me or Wikipedia.

Strong copyleft gives me the protection that full-scale financial
exploitation with no return is unlikely.  Strong copyleft leads to the
expectation that I and others will also be able to benefit from the content
that others subsequently add to my work.

I realize it often feels like people writing for Wikipedia are giving our
efforts away for nothing, but in my mind we are buying reciprocity.  We are
buying the expectation that as others improve our work we will ultimately be
free to benefit from that as well.

If Wikipedia were simply CC-BY (or the equivalent), that would be a big
turn-off for someone like me.

Radical freedom comes with trade-offs.  Truly free content is more useful,
but I don't think the encyclopedia would have as extensive an editor
community if we dropped the copyleft provisions from our license.  And
without a large community, we wouldn't have the same size and scope we have
today.

Maybe I'm wrong about that.  Maybe a truly free encyclopedia would do just
as well (or even better) at attracting contributers, but I wouldn't count on
it.

-Robert Rohde


On Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 9:01 PM, David Goodman <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I know the following is not the current situation, but:
>
> The only thing we have any real reason to insist on for Wikipedia
> content is attribution, and the only attribution that should be
> necessary is attribution to Wikipedia with a link to where exactly it
> was taken.
>
> Everything we do beyond this is a practical restriction on the use of
> our content. Rather than making it free in any real sense of the word
> except the artificiality of copyleft, it makes it less free. Freedom
> with respect to intellectual property is the opportunity to take
> intellectual content and do what you will with it. Free material is
> material you can us for your own purposes, whatever they may be. (and
> I point out that putting restrictive licenses on something and
> republishing it does not destroy the underlying freedom; you can claim
> what copyright you want to claim, but it doesn't mean you have it.
> People do this with PD US government material routinely.)
>
> I seriously doubt any contributor of Wikipedia text content really
> cares about individual attribution to his individual contribution. How
> could they, given that we permit any modification whatever, and the
> contribution will in most cases be entangled hopeless in hundreds of
> others. When you read the disclaimer, you know that you are leaving it
> open to be twisted in any manner whatsoever and used for purposes
> completely alien to yours. Sometimes I care that people preserve the
> attribution to me personally of something I write--in those cases I
> write for a more convention medium--and will usually ask not just BY,
> but NC. Most people care about those two concepts--they write for
> reputation, and if there's any money, they want some of it. But not
> when they write for Wikipedia. There's no money, and your contribution
> will be to the encyclopedia as a whole. Yes, some people say that they
> wrote certain articles, but the most they can really say is that they
> started them or wrote some of what remains in the content.  You get no
> reputation from writing scattered sentences.
>
> Illustrations I am told may be different. sounds reasonable--they
> carry individual licensing statements--though again I am puzzled,
> because they are open to any editing whatever. If a photographer
> contributes his art, he lets us distort it. The version he
> contributed, though, is still there.
>
> There is a real point in advocating copyleft to change the world to
> the use of free content; I fully understand the desire to change the
> world to the merits of "libre" publishing.  But maintaining it in
> Wikipedia is  pointy--wp is there as an encyclopedia to be used, and
> the very thought that one could not take text and put it wherever you
> please is completely opposite to the spirit of contribution. Its the
> zealots and their legal ingenuity triumphing over commonsense and the
> need to actually provide a free encyclopedia in the way ordinary
> people mean "free".  They're using the technicalities of their
> licenses to restrict content if other  people want to use differently
> from the way they had in mind when they thought about how to develop
> non-commercial software. A brilliant innovation--but it should not
> apply to us.
>
> NYBrad show the right way a good lawyer approaches things: decide what
> we want to do, and find a legal way of doing it.  I'm not one, but I
> think  the easiest legal way is to change our license to the freest
> possible, and give people the right to ask that the content they
> contributed under another assumption be withdrawn and their text
> rewritten. If we need to rewrite two paragraphs a year, which is what
> i expect, i hereby offer to do it.
>
> On 7/31/08, Thomas Dalton <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >> In an unrelated comment, some people were wondering *why* Google is
> >> giving such limited license choices.  I don't know for sure, of
> >> course, and I don't think they'll give a straight answer, but one
> >> possibility is that they're worried about the implications ShareAlike
> >> licenses would have on embedded ads.
> >
> > Unless they're worried about reusers having embedded ads, I don't see
> > a problem - Google require you to grant them a pretty wide ranging
> > license in addition to whatever you give the public.
> >
> > _______________________________________________
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> >
>
>
> --
> David Goodman, Ph.D, M.L.S.
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User_talk:DGG
>
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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

George William Herbert
On Fri, Aug 1, 2008 at 12:04 PM, Robert Rohde <[hidden email]> wrote:
>...
> Strong copyleft gives me the protection that full-scale financial
> exploitation with no return is unlikely.


This is drifting off topic, but...

This particular argument against the less restrictive -BY type
licenses for open content does not make sense in the real world of how
authors are compensated for work, when they work for compensation.

Those authors who have started actively freely releasing their older
works, or newer / upcoming works, have seen increases in sales for
those works.

Additionally, a number of authors have ancedotally indicated that they
both sold previously unsold work they published openly, and gotten
inquiries and new business for commissioned work out of having
publicized themselves in that manner.

The idea that "I have to license this to prevent (unnamed huge media
conglomerate) from making money off my Wikipedia article" is silly.
Someone trying to publish a print set of Wikipedia for normal print
rates would fail - it's free on the web.  Including an article or
parts of an article in a larger work of some sort wouldn't be the sort
of wholesale financial rip-off that many feel it is... a normal author
makes five to ten cents a word in advance (and often no more than the
advance) for most types of writing, to bound the problem.  A 500 word
WP article is therefor something that a publishing house would
compensate $25 - 50 to have an author write it from scratch.

I would rather forego $50 and get my name out there (free advertising
for my writing abilities!).


Professional writers either are falling into the "Don't redistribute
my stuff at all" camp (old writers, some new ones), and "Here, take
it, I own copyright but please give this to your friends" camp.  Also
somewhat distinguished by genre.

The "copyleft" -SA type licenses are not seemingly relevant to actual
compensation for writing.  If anything, they seem to by
counterproductive, by inhibiting the types of reuse which would be
likely to effectively publicize one as a good writer (denying you your
share of the free publicity associated with writing it in the first
place) without giving any significant chance of actually receiving
direct compensation of note for the writing itself.

I don't object to people holding that intellectual opinion.  But I
think that those who do are in fact shooting yourselves in the foot on
the practical "might make money off this" sense.  I think you've
trapped yourselves in a 1980s vintage philosophy that has failed on
actual application to the real world.  If you want to make money off
writing, any of your writing, you need to talk to and look at what
people who write for a living do with their intellectual property.  I
believe Cory Doctrow's viewpoint is far more relevant than Richard
Stallman's on this point.


This is completely unrelated to the "keeping it free and open"
justification for GFDL / -SA type licenses, of course.


--
-george william herbert
[hidden email]

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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

Mary Murrell
It is not the case that you can't make money from a print version of something that is available on line for free. Case in point: philosopher Harry Frankfurt published an article in the 1980s in an academic journal. It eventually made its way to an unrestricted website where one could freely download it.  Nonethless, a publisher,  just a couple years ago, published the thing as a little book, with the same title and with not a single change, and it sold over 350,000 copies and got a huge amount of publicity for the author (and the essay). The title of the book/essay is On Bullshit.

Of course, Cory Doctorow makes the same point about his own work, which he makes available for free on line.

--- On Fri, 8/1/08, George Herbert <[hidden email]> wrote:
From: George Herbert <[hidden email]>
Subject: Re: [Foundation-l] Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol
To: "Wikimedia Foundation Mailing List" <[hidden email]>
Date: Friday, August 1, 2008, 1:38 PM

...
The idea that "I have to license this to prevent (unnamed huge media
conglomerate) from making money off my Wikipedia article" is silly.
Someone trying to publish a print set of Wikipedia for normal print
rates would fail - it's free on the web.  



     
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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

Philippe Beaudette
In reply to this post by George William Herbert
I don't doubt this statement, but do wonder if you have a citation for  
it...?

Philippe

_____________________
Philippe Beaudette
Tulsa, OK
[hidden email]




On Aug 1, 2008, at 3:38 PM, George Herbert wrote:

> Those authors who have started actively freely releasing their older
> works, or newer / upcoming works, have seen increases in sales for
> those works.


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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

George William Herbert
In reply to this post by Mary Murrell
If you thought I was suggesting you can't make money off freely
published work, I didn't mean to leave that impression at all...
Practical experience over the last decade is that one clearly can make
a lot of money that way.

In the speculative fiction arena, Cory is one well known example.
Somewhat less well known author Eric Flint freely released one of his
early novels on the web in the mid-90s, after it had been out for
several years - there was a statistically significant *rise* in its
sales immediately, and the rest of his books showed a sales increase
as well.  I have informally heard that he thinks that between 25 and
40% of his sales have been driven by him openly releasing things.
John Scalzi sold a speculative fiction book that he wrote for fun and
serialized on his blog to a major publisher, and now is both
critically acclaimed and one of the better paid speculative fiction
writers with a number of genre bestseller list books.

My point was that -SA / GFDL type licensing doesn't help turn free web
publishing into money, and may hurt your chances to do that.


-george william herbert

On Fri, Aug 1, 2008 at 1:51 PM, Mary Murrell <[hidden email]> wrote:

> It is not the case that you can't make money from a print version of something that is available on line for free. Case in point: philosopher Harry Frankfurt published an article in the 1980s in an academic journal. It eventually made its way to an unrestricted website where one could freely download it.  Nonethless, a publisher,  just a couple years ago, published the thing as a little book, with the same title and with not a single change, and it sold over 350,000 copies and got a huge amount of publicity for the author (and the essay). The title of the book/essay is On Bullshit.
>
> Of course, Cory Doctorow makes the same point about his own work, which he makes available for free on line.
>
> --- On Fri, 8/1/08, George Herbert <[hidden email]> wrote:
> From: George Herbert <[hidden email]>
> Subject: Re: [Foundation-l] Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol
> To: "Wikimedia Foundation Mailing List" <[hidden email]>
> Date: Friday, August 1, 2008, 1:38 PM
>
> ...
> The idea that "I have to license this to prevent (unnamed huge media
> conglomerate) from making money off my Wikipedia article" is silly.
> Someone trying to publish a print set of Wikipedia for normal print
> rates would fail - it's free on the web.
>
>
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>



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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

George William Herbert
In reply to this post by Philippe Beaudette
On Fri, Aug 1, 2008 at 1:58 PM, Philippe Beaudette
<[hidden email]> wrote:
> I don't doubt this statement, but do wonder if you have a citation for
> it...?

But of course.

http://baens-universe.com/articles/salvos6

Not exactly an academic text, but it's by one of the authors (Eric
Flint) who believes (and has numbers to support) that his income is
strongly helped by making his writing available freely on the web...


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[hidden email]

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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

Philippe Beaudette
Thanks... i look forward to reading that... I've been looking for some  
numbers one way or 'tother on that.

_____________________
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Tulsa, OK
[hidden email]




On Aug 1, 2008, at 4:13 PM, George Herbert wrote:

> On Fri, Aug 1, 2008 at 1:58 PM, Philippe Beaudette
> <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> I don't doubt this statement, but do wonder if you have a citation  
>> for
>> it...?
>
> But of course.
>
> http://baens-universe.com/articles/salvos6
>
> Not exactly an academic text, but it's by one of the authors (Eric
> Flint) who believes (and has numbers to support) that his income is
> strongly helped by making his writing available freely on the web...
>
>
> --
> -george william herbert
> [hidden email]
>
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l


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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

Robert Rohde
In reply to this post by George William Herbert
On Fri, Aug 1, 2008 at 3:13 PM, George Herbert <[hidden email]>wrote:

> On Fri, Aug 1, 2008 at 1:58 PM, Philippe Beaudette
> <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > I don't doubt this statement, but do wonder if you have a citation for
> > it...?
>
> But of course.
>
> http://baens-universe.com/articles/salvos6
>
> Not exactly an academic text, but it's by one of the authors (Eric
> Flint) who believes (and has numbers to support) that his income is
> strongly helped by making his writing available freely on the web...
>
>


There is a large difference, at least in my mind, between choosing to give
away text or music to others for them to read/listen to, and giving it away
in such a manner that they repackage and republish it without needing the
original author's consent.

Using "free" content as a marketing tool or as a means to drive other
sources of revenue (e.g. web ads), is certainly a legitimate publishing tool
and one that is commonly used.  However, I think if you ask Jim Baen Books
about whether you can republish their books without paying royalties, then
they will flatly deny such a request.  Copyleft works generally are more
"free" to the public than the "free" books and music people give away.  In
other words the public can not only enjoy them, but also build upon them.

I suspect that most of the authors you cite as benefitting from giving away
free works nonetheless have an expectation that "free" means less than the
concept of radical freedom that started this diversionary thread.

As Wikipedians, I think we are all committed to giving away the content
(i.e. no fees for reading the encyclopedia), but the question arising from
the GFDL vs. CC-BY, etc. is what limitations may be appropriate on the
additional uses that people might have for that content.  Personally, I am
glad that Wikipedia is subject to strong copyleft, which serves to ensure
that we should also benefit from future works that build upon Wikipedia.

-Robert Rohde
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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

David Goodman
But fewer future works will build of Wikipedia  if they cant use it
how they want. I find it interesting that the people here are
concerned about financial rathe than intellectual credit.

On Fri, Aug 1, 2008 at 6:56 PM, Robert Rohde <[hidden email]> wrote:

> As Wikipedians, I think we are all committed to giving away the content
> (i.e. no fees for reading the encyclopedia), but the question arising from
> the GFDL vs. CC-BY, etc. is what limitations may be appropriate on the
> additional uses that people might have for that content.  Personally, I am
> glad that Wikipedia is subject to strong copyleft, which serves to ensure
> that we should also benefit from future works that build upon Wikipedia.
>
> -Robert Rohde
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>



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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

Nikola Smolenski
On Saturday 02 August 2008 05:41:35 David Goodman wrote:
> But fewer future works will build of Wikipedia  if they cant use it
> how they want. I find it interesting that the people here are
> concerned about financial rathe than intellectual credit.

Both things you say are flat out wrong. First, it is by no means certain that
fewer future works will build on Wikipedia if it continues with a copyleft
license; immediately perhaps, but you are forgetting that people will be able
to build upon derivatives of derivatives, which would otherwise not be the
case. Second, I don't think that anyone here has mentioned anything about
financial credit; people are concerned about continuing availability of work,
which is a completely different matter.

> On Fri, Aug 1, 2008 at 6:56 PM, Robert Rohde <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > As Wikipedians, I think we are all committed to giving away the content
> > (i.e. no fees for reading the encyclopedia), but the question arising
> > from the GFDL vs. CC-BY, etc. is what limitations may be appropriate on
> > the additional uses that people might have for that content.  Personally,
> > I am glad that Wikipedia is subject to strong copyleft, which serves to
> > ensure that we should also benefit from future works that build upon
> > Wikipedia.

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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

George William Herbert
In reply to this post by Robert Rohde
On Fri, Aug 1, 2008 at 3:56 PM, Robert Rohde <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Using "free" content as a marketing tool or as a means to drive other
> sources of revenue (e.g. web ads), is certainly a legitimate publishing tool
> and one that is commonly used.  However, I think if you ask Jim Baen Books
> about whether you can republish their books without paying royalties, then
> they will flatly deny such a request.

Sure, and the licenses on their "Free Library" generally are "all
rights reserved, including the right to reproduce this work" (despite
which, it's zero cost to download straight off the web in numerous
formats including RTF and all the book readers).

This is the no-cost free versus the fully open content free, in that
regard.  However...

> Copyleft works generally are more
> "free" to the public than the "free" books and music people give away.  In
> other words the public can not only enjoy them, but also build upon them.
>
> I suspect that most of the authors you cite as benefitting from giving away
> free works nonetheless have an expectation that "free" means less than the
> concept of radical freedom that started this diversionary thread.

Cory Doctrow has put a number of his writings into the public domain.
There's not much more free than that.

He's not the only one.

> As Wikipedians, I think we are all committed to giving away the content
> (i.e. no fees for reading the encyclopedia), but the question arising from
> the GFDL vs. CC-BY, etc. is what limitations may be appropriate on the
> additional uses that people might have for that content.  Personally, I am
> glad that Wikipedia is subject to strong copyleft, which serves to ensure
> that we should also benefit from future works that build upon Wikipedia.

This is a case where benefiting from future works that might build on
Wikipedia is done in a manner guaranteed to reduce the chance that
they're actually built that way - it's so hard, for example, to
include more than "fair use" worth of a Wikipedia article in a
copyrighted non-libre licensed book that we see very few requests to
do so.

The reason that I -BY crosslicense my contributions is that I would
like to maximize the chances that someone can find a way to reuse
them.  I would rather that they be reused, even if I see no cent of it
and they're not republished in a fully open redistribution manner,
than not reused at all.

If nobody reuses it, then the potential benefits were all lost.


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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

George William Herbert
In reply to this post by Nikola Smolenski
On Sat, Aug 2, 2008 at 6:23 AM, Nikola Smolenski <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Saturday 02 August 2008 05:41:35 David Goodman wrote:
>> But fewer future works will build of Wikipedia  if they cant use it
>> how they want. I find it interesting that the people here are
>> concerned about financial rathe than intellectual credit.
>
> Both things you say are flat out wrong. First, it is by no means certain that
> fewer future works will build on Wikipedia if it continues with a copyleft
> license; immediately perhaps, but you are forgetting that people will be able
> to build upon derivatives of derivatives, which would otherwise not be the
> case.


This line of argument is more interesting in theory than in practice.

True - if we -BY license something and it gets derived / transformed
into a non-free license form, we can't directly build on that.

But we can look at that, and rewrite our stuff with theirs in mind.

Not being able to simply scoop up and reuse their words is, for
nonfiction writing, not much of an obstacle.  If they add facts,
sources, etc., those things are all openly available *anyways*.  If
they polish prose, we may not be able to import it wholesale, but at
the least we can take it as another view on how to improve the
existing WP text.


> Second, I don't think that anyone here has mentioned anything about
> financial credit; people are concerned about continuing availability of work,
> which is a completely different matter.

Someone explicitly mentioned not wanting a third party to benefit
financially from their Wikipedia work earlier in thread.

You and many others (myself included) may not care about this, but it
is a concern that is expressed by a consistent fraction of the
contributors who comment on such things.


--
-george william herbert
[hidden email]

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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

Anthony-73
On Sat, Aug 2, 2008 at 7:49 PM, George Herbert <[hidden email]>wrote:

> On Sat, Aug 2, 2008 at 6:23 AM, Nikola Smolenski <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
> > On Saturday 02 August 2008 05:41:35 David Goodman wrote:
> >> But fewer future works will build of Wikipedia  if they cant use it
> >> how they want. I find it interesting that the people here are
> >> concerned about financial rathe than intellectual credit.
> >
> > Both things you say are flat out wrong. First, it is by no means certain
> that
> > fewer future works will build on Wikipedia if it continues with a
> copyleft
> > license; immediately perhaps, but you are forgetting that people will be
> able
> > to build upon derivatives of derivatives, which would otherwise not be
> the
> > case.
>
>
> This line of argument is more interesting in theory than in practice.
>

In practice, has it ever been done?  Has any article in any one of the
Wikimedia projects ever been improved by someone outside the project and
then had the improvements added back without getting special permission?

I suppose this will be more likely to happen when (if) the projects move
from GFDL to CC-BY-SA.  But still, I wonder how big of a deal this is going
to be.

On the other hand, at least in terms of images, I believe there have been
cases of photographers who made money off their GFDL works, which likely
would not have happened under a non-copyleft license.
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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

Todd Allen
In reply to this post by David Goodman
On Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 10:01 PM, David Goodman <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I know the following is not the current situation, but:
>
> The only thing we have any real reason to insist on for Wikipedia
> content is attribution, and the only attribution that should be
> necessary is attribution to Wikipedia with a link to where exactly it
> was taken.
>
> Everything we do beyond this is a practical restriction on the use of
> our content. Rather than making it free in any real sense of the word
> except the artificiality of copyleft, it makes it less free. Freedom
> with respect to intellectual property is the opportunity to take
> intellectual content and do what you will with it. Free material is
> material you can us for your own purposes, whatever they may be. (and
> I point out that putting restrictive licenses on something and
> republishing it does not destroy the underlying freedom; you can claim
> what copyright you want to claim, but it doesn't mean you have it.
> People do this with PD US government material routinely.)
>
> I seriously doubt any contributor of Wikipedia text content really
> cares about individual attribution to his individual contribution. How
> could they, given that we permit any modification whatever, and the
> contribution will in most cases be entangled hopeless in hundreds of
> others. When you read the disclaimer, you know that you are leaving it
> open to be twisted in any manner whatsoever and used for purposes
> completely alien to yours. Sometimes I care that people preserve the
> attribution to me personally of something I write--in those cases I
> write for a more convention medium--and will usually ask not just BY,
> but NC. Most people care about those two concepts--they write for
> reputation, and if there's any money, they want some of it. But not
> when they write for Wikipedia. There's no money, and your contribution
> will be to the encyclopedia as a whole. Yes, some people say that they
> wrote certain articles, but the most they can really say is that they
> started them or wrote some of what remains in the content.  You get no
> reputation from writing scattered sentences.
>
> Illustrations I am told may be different. sounds reasonable--they
> carry individual licensing statements--though again I am puzzled,
> because they are open to any editing whatever. If a photographer
> contributes his art, he lets us distort it. The version he
> contributed, though, is still there.
>
> There is a real point in advocating copyleft to change the world to
> the use of free content; I fully understand the desire to change the
> world to the merits of "libre" publishing.  But maintaining it in
> Wikipedia is  pointy--wp is there as an encyclopedia to be used, and
> the very thought that one could not take text and put it wherever you
> please is completely opposite to the spirit of contribution. Its the
> zealots and their legal ingenuity triumphing over commonsense and the
> need to actually provide a free encyclopedia in the way ordinary
> people mean "free".  They're using the technicalities of their
> licenses to restrict content if other  people want to use differently
> from the way they had in mind when they thought about how to develop
> non-commercial software. A brilliant innovation--but it should not
> apply to us.
>
> NYBrad show the right way a good lawyer approaches things: decide what
> we want to do, and find a legal way of doing it.  I'm not one, but I
> think  the easiest legal way is to change our license to the freest
> possible, and give people the right to ask that the content they
> contributed under another assumption be withdrawn and their text
> rewritten. If we need to rewrite two paragraphs a year, which is what
> i expect, i hereby offer to do it.
>
> On 7/31/08, Thomas Dalton <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>> In an unrelated comment, some people were wondering *why* Google is
>>> giving such limited license choices.  I don't know for sure, of
>>> course, and I don't think they'll give a straight answer, but one
>>> possibility is that they're worried about the implications ShareAlike
>>> licenses would have on embedded ads.
>>
>> Unless they're worried about reusers having embedded ads, I don't see
>> a problem - Google require you to grant them a pretty wide ranging
>> license in addition to whatever you give the public.
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> foundation-l mailing list
>> [hidden email]
>> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>>
>
>
> --
> David Goodman, Ph.D, M.L.S.
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User_talk:DGG
>
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>

I think, however, that the distinction is more than artificial. When I
write code, for example, I license it under GPL, not BSD. My choice in
this matter is deliberate-I don't want my code used in closed source
software. I expect that anyone who takes advantage of my offer to
share my code will in turn share theirs. The GPL enforces this, other
licenses may not, so I pick it for that exact reason. It is not, to
me, a triviality or a technicality.

On the other hand, I -personally- agree with you about free knowledge,
and so I personally choose to license my contributions to Wikipedia as
public domain (and have an explicit statement on my user page of my
intent to do so). However, other contributors who contribute to
articles may have a very real expectation that their contributions are
under the GFDL, and that the viral share-alike requirements of the
GFDL will be followed by reusers. I imagine that to at least a
significant portion of these contributors, the GFDL requirements are
similarly not artificial or technicalities, they are core expectations
that these people had when they chose to contribute to Wikipedia. "I'm
happy to share my knowledge with you, but if you reuse my work, I
expect you to similarly share what you made with it, and to make sure
that any reuses from there are also shared" is the exact expectation
of the GFDL. That expectation of those who contributed in good faith
under it should not be dismissed as light or trivial, and it certainly
should not be denigrated as anti-free when it is the exact opposite.

--
Freedom is the right to say that 2+2=4. From this all else follows.

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Re: Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

Gerard Meijssen-3
Hoi,
It is good to remember what Wikipedia aims to do. It aims to create an
encyclopaedic resource. It is good to remember what the Wikimedia Foundation
is there for. It ams to bring good information to all people in this world.

When Wikipedia started, the GFDL was selected. It has been plain for a long
time that this specific license is not the best for Wikipedia and the WMF.
This license was created to license the documentation that is created for
software. There is clarity in many circles that the CC-by-sa is a better
mouse trap for the knowledge that can be found in Wikipedia. This license
shares the same key characteristics with the GFDL including its viral
nature.

Technically it is possible to use the CC-by material that is created in Knol
in Wikipedia. Mike Godwin is apprehensive of doing exactly this because in
the analogous BSD - GPL world many hard words have been used because of the
lack of cooperation coming from GPL programmers when they incorporated BSD
software in the further development of the original BSD software.

From my perspective, of the three licenses that Knol allows, only the CC-by
is a license I have affinity with. I am sure that the average Wikimedian
does not think highly of CC-by-nd or an all reserved copyright statement.
Consequently, the only Knols that might be of interest to us are the once
with a more permissive license that our own. We can make use of their
content, but I do not think that it is likely to happen that much.

As it has been said often enough, our license is not compatible with the
license allowed by Google for the Knols. Consequently it is for the authors
of articles that end up as a Knol to indicate that this is not allowed.

Those people who care too much about all the fine points of licenses will
continue to make their finer points. In the mean time, I am happy that there
is another initiative that tries to inform people.
Thanks,
         GeardM



On Sun, Aug 3, 2008 at 8:52 PM, Todd Allen <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 10:01 PM, David Goodman <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
> > I know the following is not the current situation, but:
> >
> > The only thing we have any real reason to insist on for Wikipedia
> > content is attribution, and the only attribution that should be
> > necessary is attribution to Wikipedia with a link to where exactly it
> > was taken.
> >
> > Everything we do beyond this is a practical restriction on the use of
> > our content. Rather than making it free in any real sense of the word
> > except the artificiality of copyleft, it makes it less free. Freedom
> > with respect to intellectual property is the opportunity to take
> > intellectual content and do what you will with it. Free material is
> > material you can us for your own purposes, whatever they may be. (and
> > I point out that putting restrictive licenses on something and
> > republishing it does not destroy the underlying freedom; you can claim
> > what copyright you want to claim, but it doesn't mean you have it.
> > People do this with PD US government material routinely.)
> >
> > I seriously doubt any contributor of Wikipedia text content really
> > cares about individual attribution to his individual contribution. How
> > could they, given that we permit any modification whatever, and the
> > contribution will in most cases be entangled hopeless in hundreds of
> > others. When you read the disclaimer, you know that you are leaving it
> > open to be twisted in any manner whatsoever and used for purposes
> > completely alien to yours. Sometimes I care that people preserve the
> > attribution to me personally of something I write--in those cases I
> > write for a more convention medium--and will usually ask not just BY,
> > but NC. Most people care about those two concepts--they write for
> > reputation, and if there's any money, they want some of it. But not
> > when they write for Wikipedia. There's no money, and your contribution
> > will be to the encyclopedia as a whole. Yes, some people say that they
> > wrote certain articles, but the most they can really say is that they
> > started them or wrote some of what remains in the content.  You get no
> > reputation from writing scattered sentences.
> >
> > Illustrations I am told may be different. sounds reasonable--they
> > carry individual licensing statements--though again I am puzzled,
> > because they are open to any editing whatever. If a photographer
> > contributes his art, he lets us distort it. The version he
> > contributed, though, is still there.
> >
> > There is a real point in advocating copyleft to change the world to
> > the use of free content; I fully understand the desire to change the
> > world to the merits of "libre" publishing.  But maintaining it in
> > Wikipedia is  pointy--wp is there as an encyclopedia to be used, and
> > the very thought that one could not take text and put it wherever you
> > please is completely opposite to the spirit of contribution. Its the
> > zealots and their legal ingenuity triumphing over commonsense and the
> > need to actually provide a free encyclopedia in the way ordinary
> > people mean "free".  They're using the technicalities of their
> > licenses to restrict content if other  people want to use differently
> > from the way they had in mind when they thought about how to develop
> > non-commercial software. A brilliant innovation--but it should not
> > apply to us.
> >
> > NYBrad show the right way a good lawyer approaches things: decide what
> > we want to do, and find a legal way of doing it.  I'm not one, but I
> > think  the easiest legal way is to change our license to the freest
> > possible, and give people the right to ask that the content they
> > contributed under another assumption be withdrawn and their text
> > rewritten. If we need to rewrite two paragraphs a year, which is what
> > i expect, i hereby offer to do it.
> >
> > On 7/31/08, Thomas Dalton <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >>> In an unrelated comment, some people were wondering *why* Google is
> >>> giving such limited license choices.  I don't know for sure, of
> >>> course, and I don't think they'll give a straight answer, but one
> >>> possibility is that they're worried about the implications ShareAlike
> >>> licenses would have on embedded ads.
> >>
> >> Unless they're worried about reusers having embedded ads, I don't see
> >> a problem - Google require you to grant them a pretty wide ranging
> >> license in addition to whatever you give the public.
> >>
> >> _______________________________________________
> >> foundation-l mailing list
> >> [hidden email]
> >> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
> >>
> >
> >
> > --
> > David Goodman, Ph.D, M.L.S.
> > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User_talk:DGG
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > foundation-l mailing list
> > [hidden email]
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
> >
>
> I think, however, that the distinction is more than artificial. When I
> write code, for example, I license it under GPL, not BSD. My choice in
> this matter is deliberate-I don't want my code used in closed source
> software. I expect that anyone who takes advantage of my offer to
> share my code will in turn share theirs. The GPL enforces this, other
> licenses may not, so I pick it for that exact reason. It is not, to
> me, a triviality or a technicality.
>
> On the other hand, I -personally- agree with you about free knowledge,
> and so I personally choose to license my contributions to Wikipedia as
> public domain (and have an explicit statement on my user page of my
> intent to do so). However, other contributors who contribute to
> articles may have a very real expectation that their contributions are
> under the GFDL, and that the viral share-alike requirements of the
> GFDL will be followed by reusers. I imagine that to at least a
> significant portion of these contributors, the GFDL requirements are
> similarly not artificial or technicalities, they are core expectations
> that these people had when they chose to contribute to Wikipedia. "I'm
> happy to share my knowledge with you, but if you reuse my work, I
> expect you to similarly share what you made with it, and to make sure
> that any reuses from there are also shared" is the exact expectation
> of the GFDL. That expectation of those who contributed in good faith
> under it should not be dismissed as light or trivial, and it certainly
> should not be denigrated as anti-free when it is the exact opposite.
>
> --
> Freedom is the right to say that 2+2=4. From this all else follows.
>
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>
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