On 27/11/2009, Bod Notbod <bodnotbod(a)gmail.com> wrote:
On Fri, Nov 27, 2009 at 7:08 PM, Ray Saintonge
Certain copyright issues are also at the heart of
the problem, notably
that you can't copyright information. You can copyright expression, but
Wikipedians are quite happy to not use the actual wording of news
I wonder how true that is, though. I'm sure people on Wikinews do
sometimes cut 'n' paste, but I feel there's more to it than that.
It actually takes quite a bit of work to read an entire article and
process it in your mind then put out a purely self-made version. And,
let's take the *most* optimistic view of editors: you're still
reporting a report. Some guy went out there, said what he saw, got
money for it, funded by advertising.
Not always, no. Perhaps not even usually. The money often comes from
subscriptions, classical example is the BBC. If anything,
subscriptions are more reliable; there's less commercial pressure to
bend the truth on things. And a lot of the organisations that use
advertising pay companies like Reuters for their news, there's only
very indirect funding by advertising.
And a lot of Rupert Murdoch's money comes from subscriptions also- he
charges for satellite and cable access.
At best, all we can do is say "this guy saw what
he saw and now I'm
A lot of the time, that's all they're saying too; stories frequently
aren't by reporters from their organisations.
Don't misunderstand me... I'm still on
Wikipedia/Wikinews's side on
this. But that's as a reader and editor, not as someone running a
Surely it must be true to say that Wikinews would be nothing without
paid journalists from whom we aggregate content?
Not absolutely definitely. The Wikipedia doesn't have (m)any paid
staff, in the unbelievably unlikely situation that the other news
organisations completely disappeared, there's a reasonable chance that
Wikinews could fill the gap. We also have other sites like Slashdot
and Digg and so forth; these also find and disseminate news. They're
not normally as reliable, but they're not *that* bad. In most news
organisations, news finds them, not the other way around; and then
they have a process that pretty much anyone could do, it's not to do
with how they get paid.