On Thu, Aug 21, 2008 at 12:59 PM, Joe Szilagyi <szilagyi(a)gmail.com> wrote:
On Wed, Aug 20, 2008 at 4:51 PM, Matthew Flaschen
Supporters of broad use of PD-art outside of the
U.S. have seized on a
statement by Erik Möller that, "To put it plainly, WMF's position has
always been that faithful reproductions of two-dimensional public domain
works of art are public domain, and that claims to the contrary
represent an assault on the very concept of a public domain." and called
it the "position of the WMF"
and "The official position taken by the Wikimedia Foundation"
In my opinion, this is mistaken on many levels. Regardless of his
intentions, Erik Möller does not have the authority to speak for the
WMF. If the board does /intend/ to make this statement, a binding
resolution would be a much better means.
This choice of interpretation involves deliberately ignoring the current
legal climate in certain countries outside the U.S., and I believe that
is a significant departure at Commons.
I am asking the board to step in and provide clarity on this issue in
particular, and the ways they will and will not communicate their views
on important issues in general.
Adding commons-l as a CC as this clearly involves the commons community,
should have included that CC to start. Lets all try to include commons-l on
Erik is deputy director, and he, Sue, Mike Godwin or the board itself I
believe is entitled to make such a statement. Are you simply asking for the
board to endorse or not endorse it?
Back in 2004, Jimmy Wales has stated:
*I officially pronounce that as of June 30, 2004, content which we are
using _solely_ by virtue of non-free licenses should be removed from
In 2007, a resolution regarding it has announced:
So, yes, there is a need to an official statement. Erik and Mike have given
theirs *opinions*. If Wikimedia Foundation doesn't need to have official
statements regarding subjects like this, the Wikimedia Foundation doesn't
need to have a Board of Trustees (since everyone can assert anything) and
hundreds of volunteers don't need to waste your time translating gazillions
of pages related to the Board elections expecting that the Foundation never
given controversial rulings that can broke copyleft things in some contries.