Licensing transition: opposing points of view

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Re: Licensing transition: opposing points of view

Nikola Smolenski
Дана Sunday 22 March 2009 09:50:25 Jussi-Ville Heiskanen написа:
> the moment, provided there will be no back-sliding later. In an ideal
> world I would prefer
> multi-licensing under *all* localized versions of CC-BY-SA 3.0 and a TOS
> that would
> pre-emptively require assent to multi-licensing under any future
> localized versions. That

Doesn't simply licensing under CC-BY-SA 3.0 cover that already?

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Re: Licensing transition: opposing points of view

Michael Snow-3
In reply to this post by Nikola Smolenski
Nikola Smolenski wrote:
> Дана Friday 20 March 2009 23:11:17 Michael Snow написа:
>  
>> By comparison, Erik only said that people had over-attributed
>> historically. He didn't say it was unreasonable of them to
>> over-attribute, nor do I think that should be implied in what he said.
>>    
> When you are over-something, it means that you are doing more of it than you
> should. Usually it is not reasonable to behave like that.
>  
More of it than you need to, not more of it than you should. There is no
value judgment that people should not over-attribute, only that they
should not be required to. The unreasonableness applies to the
requirement, not the behavior. Doing more than is required can be
reasonable nevertheless. If I'm asked to pluck five apples off a tree
and instead I pick ten, that may well be reasonable, perhaps I was
hungry. Whether it's an abundance of caution or some motivation
independent of the requirement, there are plenty of legitimate reasons
that people decide to exceed minimum requirements.

--Michael Snow



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Re: Licensing transition: opposing points of view

Sue Gardner-2
In reply to this post by Jussi-Ville Heiskanen
2009/3/22 Jussi-Ville Heiskanen <[hidden email]>:

> Sue Gardner wrote:
>>
>> I've been meaning to reply in this thread to what Jussi said. (Sorry to
>> not reply inline; I'm on my Blackberry.)
>>
>>
>
> First of all, can I ask as a favor that you never again refer to me as
> "Jussi". Jussi is my grandpa.
> I am Jussi-Ville, or "J-V" (Jay-Vee) for short. Often also known by my TLA
> "JVH" in contexts of
> people like Mike Godwin, who date me from the early ages of the internet. I
> am not offended,
> but I do want to make it clear that referring to me as "Jussi" does have
> significance.

...

> Yours, no offense taken nor hopefully given,


Absolutely: me naming you as Jussi was just sloppy shorthand.
Jussi-Ville it is :-)

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Re: Licensing transition: opposing points of view

Birgitte_sb
In reply to this post by Robert Rohde



--- On Fri, 3/20/09, Erik Moeller <[hidden email]> wrote:

> From: Erik Moeller <[hidden email]>
> Subject: Re: [Foundation-l] Licensing transition: opposing points of view
> To: "Wikimedia Foundation Mailing List" <[hidden email]>
> Date: Friday, March 20, 2009, 8:07 PM
> 2009/3/20 geni <[hidden email]>:
> > Your suggestion that wikipedia:copyrights has any
> baring on what
> > people have agreed to have done with their work simply
> doesn't hold
> > water.
>
> Well, I'm glad that we've cleared up that CC-BY-SA and
> link-back
> credit aren't irreconcilable after all. Now we're
> apparently moving on
> to the new topic: Do site-wide terms of use matter when
> determining
> what a license means in practice? I'm not going to spend a
> lot of time
> on this argument: Of course a site-wide policy page linked
> to from
> every page has relevance when determining the terms of
> use/re-use. But
> even a literal and unreasonably narrow focus on the GFDL
> doesn't
> support rigorous author attribution:


<snip>

Unfortunately I haven't been able to follow all this closely so forgive me if I am bringing up something already settled.

My biggest problem:
I can understand why using the site TOS in this way is seen as a desirable way to go.  After all it would not require any of the technical work that producing a list of significant authors would.  But I think it does have big drawback.  It would hamper the importation of similarly licensed material written under dissimilar conditions of use into Wikimedia projects by non-authors.  Having this ability was one of the highlights that made the pain of the license transition process worthwhile for me.  And if we do succeed in seeing free content gain in mainstream usage, this will be and even bigger problem in the future and lead to confusion over the CC brand.  Labeling ourselves CC-by-SA but not being able accept much of the material that is published under CC-by-SA unless it is directly contributed by the original author(s) is a problem in my eyes.

Another annoyance:
There really isn't anything being said on how this will apply to projects like Commons and Wikisource that already have a large variety of works under different licenses.  How exactly will the TOS be changed on those projects?  We need to develop the tech side of having some sort of meta license/attribution information available for those projects anyway.  Already the poster and book printing extensions cannot be legally used every work within those projects without such development work. So choosing an uncommon attribution model for the license will not save us that development cost forever.


Possible compromise solution:
This requires an editable tab called Attribution.  We pick a date for license migration and on that date these tabs are generated containing only a permalink to the history of the article at that date.  From this time on when editing Wikipedia there is a new field below the edit summary asking editors to check a box if they have made a copyrightable edit and to enter the way they would like to be attributed into the field (or also the way the externally written CC-by-SA material requires attribution). Also there is the possibility of setting up an attribution name in preferences where you simply check a box that the edit is copyrightable and name is auto-filled. When saving this information is added to the Attribution tab automatically.  Admins can edit the Attribution tab manually to add people from the old history who request it, fix mistakes entered in the field, or remove someone spamming the field with obviously non-copyrighted changes, etc.  We
 recommend to reusers that they attribute the material with text that auto-generates from the info in the Attribution tab and includes a permalink to the current version of the article.  In the terms of use we specify that if you do not opt-in for a specific attribution by checking the box we are requiring you accept CC-by-SA with attribution by url as Erik describes.  We continue to hold the position that a link alone is and has always been reasonable attribution as Erik's arguments describe.  But from the license migration forward, we are offering greater flexibility in attribution options in order to be to be more compatible with free content developed externally.

Birgitte SB


     


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Re: Licensing transition: opposing points of view

Nathan Awrich
Introducing the terms of service, or anything other than the license itself,
confuses it for me too. The questions it brings to my mind are:

1) Which controls attribution, the license or the TOS?
2) For importation, which determines compatibility - the license or the TOS
of the original site (if applicable)?
3) (A restatement of 1) If the license and the TOS conflict, which controls?
4) If the intended form of attribution is seen as being allowed via the TOS,
does the TOS then constitute the actual license (as opposed to GFDL 1.2)?

A lot of this is deeply technical. I'm not clear on who is right, but wrt to
writing and debating skill alone the pro-transition folks are clearly at an
advantage. What I'd like to see is calmly argued and defined opposition;
without recourse to "You're an idiot, and I know phrase X means Y because I
said so." When Erik, Mike Godwin and Michael Snow make concise and well
written arguments, and get replies in the form of short inline comments
along the lines of "No, you're wrong" it doesn't help anyone get a good
picture of what the problems here are supposed to be.

Nathan
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Re: Licensing transition: opposing points of view

Birgitte_sb
In reply to this post by Robert Rohde



--- On Mon, 3/23/09, Nathan <[hidden email]> wrote:

> From: Nathan <[hidden email]>
> Subject: Re: [Foundation-l] Licensing transition: opposing points of view
> To: "Wikimedia Foundation Mailing List" <[hidden email]>
> Date: Monday, March 23, 2009, 2:47 PM
> Introducing the terms of service, or
> anything other than the license itself,
> confuses it for me too. The questions it brings to my mind
> are:
>
> 1) Which controls attribution, the license or the TOS?
> 2) For importation, which determines compatibility - the
> license or the TOS
> of the original site (if applicable)?
> 3) (A restatement of 1) If the license and the TOS
> conflict, which controls?
> 4) If the intended form of attribution is seen as being
> allowed via the TOS,
> does the TOS then constitute the actual license (as opposed
> to GFDL 1.2)?
>
> A lot of this is deeply technical. I'm not clear on who is
> right, but wrt to
> writing and debating skill alone the pro-transition folks
> are clearly at an
> advantage. What I'd like to see is calmly argued and
> defined opposition;
> without recourse to "You're an idiot, and I know phrase X
> means Y because I
> said so." When Erik, Mike Godwin and Michael Snow make
> concise and well
> written arguments, and get replies in the form of short
> inline comments
> along the lines of "No, you're wrong" it doesn't help
> anyone get a good
> picture of what the problems here are supposed to be.

1) The license controls attribution to a degree.  Within what is allowed by the license a TOS contract in effect where the content is created could be more restrictive but not less.

2)For importation to a WMF. The licenses must be compatible, but there could legal ramifications for an editor who breached the TOS of an external website by copying the material to a Wikimedia site. I don't think there would be legal ramifications for WMF.

3)License controls the content wherever it shows up.  A TOS is a contract which can only bind the people who agree to this contract.  Using a website to varying degrees may or may not qualify as "agreeing to a contract" in different cases, but it certainly can qualify as such.  So the license always controls the content, but a TOS may control what a particular person can to with the content.  If the content is only available from one website with a strong TOS, it is possible for the TOS to control the content completely by binding every single person who has access to the content.  This situation actually exists, most commonly with rare public domain content only available through subscription services sold to universities.

4) No the TOS is a contract only binding to people who agree to it and is attached to those people not the content.  A license is a waiver of copyright in specified situations that is attached the content generally so long as it remains copyrightable.


But none of this was exactly the concern I raised.  My concern was that the TOS proposed for WMF site would restrict authors to using to certain facet of the CC-by-SA license that is not commonly used.  This would generally prevent anyone who was not an author from importing externally published CC-by-SA material which likely relies on a more common facet of the license (naming the author by name).  This is because such non-authors would have no right to agree to the more restrictive WMF TOS on behalf of authors who simply released their work as CC-by-SA.

Regarding the rest

A partial solution to deal with unhelpful responses is to ignore emails from the people who have a habit of such responses.  Of course other people invariably take the bait and you end up reading them anyways.  But at least you only get one email instead of two.

Of course to describe this as pro-transition vs anti-transition is misleading.  It really is more a matter of the transition forcing to light all sorts of issues we did not spend time thinking on before even though they existed.  The arguments that are anti-transition are really arguments against the status quo as well.  And the pro-transition camp contains a great variety of opinions as to exactly how we should transition.


Birgitte SB


     


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Re: Licensing transition: opposing points of view

Erik Moeller-4
2009/3/23 Birgitte SB <[hidden email]>:
> But none of this was exactly the concern I raised.  My concern was that the TOS proposed for WMF site would restrict authors to using to certain facet of the CC-by-SA license that is not commonly used.  This would generally prevent anyone who was not an author from importing externally published CC-by-SA material which likely relies on a more common facet of the license (naming the author by name).  This is because such non-authors would have no right to agree to the more restrictive WMF TOS on behalf of authors who simply released their work as CC-by-SA.

This is explicitly addressed - the proposed terms do make allowance
for content attaching additional attribution requirements; see the
section "Attribution of externally attributed content" in:
http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Licensing_update

What is and isn't acceptable in terms of additional attribution for
external content, and how such attribution should be displayed, is IMO
something we need to work out as a community. We don't need to solve
every problem in this process; fundamentally what we're trying to do
is create a consistent baseline that's understandable and easy to
build on.

Erik
--
Erik Möller
Deputy Director, Wikimedia Foundation

Support Free Knowledge: http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate

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Re: Licensing transition: opposing points of view

Milos Rancic-2
I don't want to open a new thread because I have on my mind something
related to this issue, while it is not connected directly to the
present license migration. At the other side, it is a licensing
question of the future.

Because some articles have thousands of editors, usually it is not
reasonable to list them all in some random derivative work. Because of
that the recommendation is to use a link.

But, we are not so far from the point when listing all links of
previous works wouldn't be reasonable. Imagine that a lot of
universities are contributing to the free knowledge corpus and that
they are using each other's works. Imagine that a number of companies
are interested in such knowledge sharing, too. We would easily get
thousands of links for a single page.

So, the ultimate copyleft license will be PD-SA.

Other thoughts?

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