Just FYI :-)
The German Verein has just received a legal opinion they ordered some
time ago, concerning various legal issues for wikipedia and German law.
It turns out that, according to the legal opinion, German law prohibits
the collection of quotes, or quotes as such, if they are not used in a
That would mean the German wikiquote project's legal status is shaky at
The German PDF with the legal opinion is at , and as wiki code at .
The first deadline for Wikimania city is drawing to a close. As of
today, I count only 3 cities running officially, which will, I must
say, make it easier for the shortlist of 3 ;-), but which is sad
because the "unofficial locations sound pretty good.
See here at the bottom of the page for more info :
Well, if we have only three cities entering the contest, we might
decide to shorten the last round to about a week and make a decision
sometime next week.
I am waiting to hear from the "jury" about a possible time on Sunday
2nd October to have a chat/meeting with everyone involved, so please
keep reading this list to know more about what time. It will be on irc
on the #wikimania channel. The idea is to gather to ask questions
about possible missing information, discuss difficulties and
Stay tuned for more wikimania adventures.
PS. "Jury" will be composed of the Board of the Foundation, Elian,
Akl, JeLuF, Austin, Sj and myself.
Wikijunior, as many already know, is publishing a series of books, the first
of which is funded by the mysterious Beck Foundation.
This message has worried many of us:
"According to the United States Code for registering a copyrighted work, you
must include your nationality (what country you claim citizenship in) and
the country you are currently residing in, if different. It is also
suggested by the U.S. Copyright office to include the year you were born,
for identification purposes. They also ask for the year of death, and if you
know of a Wikibookian who has passed away, this would also be useful. How
exactly we are going to collect this information for users and contributors
of this Wikibooks is totally unknown, and is going to be an interesting
little ride. Please add comments in the discussion
you have any reservations about giving this information out. This is
moving into new territory here, so we don't know exactly what is going to be
required or if new policies should or ought to be developed."
(sample of the pages in question:
We are going to publish formal credit to any contributor that provides their
name, but the project's shot if we do indeed need everybodies' info, no
matter what. Many don't feel comfortable revealing such detailed info, like
their birth year, and we should respect that.
Can anyone provide insight on the level of necessity to include everyone's
Whom is the Beck Foundation that is shelling out US$10K for the project?
- Lewis H. Beck
which funds college-bound students, and has made major
contributions to the Emory University Library.
- John and Frances Beck
Chicago, whose purpose is to "initiate and support projects that
effectively promote literacy and learning among children youth, and adults".
Multiple people involved in the project have been insuccessful in contacting
Danny about the matter.
Also, the registration of wikijunior.org <http://wikijunior.org> was
scheduled to be discussed at the board meeting on the 18th, yet I don't see
any record of this having happened.
Multilinugal error messages have now been implemented on the Wikimedia
squids. I would like to thank everyone who helped to make this a
reality over the past couple of weeks. I was keeping a running list of
everyone who had helped, but I lost track of everyone :)
Here is an incomplete list of those in IRC who helped me with
translations: taw, Mackowaty, WarX, SuiSui, aoineko, Submarine, Rama,
Frieda, Quistnix, galwaygirl, Fenix, mnemo and avatar. Everyone's help
has been greatly appreciated. :)
and to Jeronim for implementing the new message across the squids.
Note that I have removed the link to OpenFacts.berlios.de, which was
getting overloaded as soon as Wikipedia went down. I have also removed
the link to the "offsite donation page" at Angela's request. The
French, German and Japanese messages direct those people to that
language's IRC channel.
I hope the community likes the new error page. Well, they'll probably
hate seeing it, but I hope they feel comfort in the fact that it's now
a much prettier error message.
(Which can be implemented on some other Wikipedias, too.)
Just to inform you that we (re-)staretd our work on that issue again.
Any interested person can see progress of our work at
http://conversion.vikimedija.org/ . In this moment we don't have
informations in English, but we would have it soon.
We have two goals:
1. To finish SrConversion which Zhengzhu almost finished (for reading
only). This is PHP-based code.
2. To make TCP server and change some parts of EditPage.php (for
writing). We intend to make the server in Python (not in C).
I want to propose a new idea for a new project: Wikisomething.
Wikisomething is dedicated to contain multilingual somethings of all
different sorts, therefore it spares us the need to found any new
different projects for speficic things. Moreover, we could also
integrate our current projects into Wikisomething.
Please vote for wikisomething on Meta-Wiki and lend the new project your
Re Angela's mention of the "community" discussing and deciding things.
Just how many folks are subscribed to Foundation-l? What percentage of
them actually contribute to Foundation-l when a new project is proposed,
or a question is raised? I've spent a lot of time on a lot of lists
(founded and moderated one for three years), and this one is, well,
quite inactive. And not only that, it's sometimes not very civil (e.g.
"Do it yourself").
Communities are groups of individuals with common interests who unite to
further those interests. They have to contribute. They have to be
helpful. Do the subscribers to Foundation-l contribute? Are they
helpful? A more basic question: do they even have common interests?
All the Best, Marshall
Marshall Poe, Ph.D.
The Atlantic Monthly
600 New Hampshire Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20037
foundation-l mailing list
Nicholas Moreau wrote:
>Whom is the Beck Foundation that is shelling out US$10K for the project?
> - Lewis H. Beck
>which funds college-bound students, and has made major
> contributions to the Emory University Library.
> - John and Frances Beck
>Chicago, whose purpose is to "initiate and support projects that
> effectively promote literacy and learning among children youth, and adults".
>Multiple people involved in the project have been insuccessful in contacting
>Danny about the matter.
I think it would be a pretty safe assumption that the grant came from
the latter. The former seems to be entirely tied to Emory University and
the Lewis H. Beck Center, and its stated purposes don't correlate with
Just a quick reply to Mark on peer review. The memoirs would not be anonymous. Any reporter worth his or her salt would try to track down the witness to see if he/she were credible. If the source could not be found, or was found to be less than credible, then the reporter/researcher wouldn't use him/her. This is SOP in all credible journalism, and works the same for all sources, no matter where they come from. Moreover, if a user (such as a reporter) finds that a source is not credible, then this could be added to the metadata (a bit like the discussions on Wikipedia entries).
You are certainly right that controversial events will attract POV accounts, and even falsified accounts. We'll have to trust that users will understand this, and help identify bad actors. But I would say that for the vast majority of memoirs, POV won't really come into play. I saw one of the last Led Zeppelin concerts with the original line up. My POV is that it was great, but I have a lot of other observations that Zep fans and folks interested in the history of Rock and Roll will be interested in. Particularly in 100 years.
From: foundation-l-bounces(a)wikimedia.org on behalf of Delirium
Sent: Fri 9/16/2005 3:24 PM
To: Wikimedia Foundation Mailing List
Subject: Re: [Foundation-l] New Proposal: WikiMemory
>Well... Why not ? Are you people OK with testimonies
>like "I was there when US army shooted on Hotel
>Palestine in Bagdad" or "I was in the jails of Abu
I think this sort of thing would be very problematic. When it comes to
contentious topics, like Israel-Palestine, people have repeatedly
demonstrated that they are willing to completely fabricate eye-witness
accounts to make one or the other side look bad.
Published eye-witness accounts can also be fabricated, of course, but
have the benefit that since they're in the public sphere of published
work, the more questionable oens have often attracted published
refutations. Similarly, books on controversial subjects are often
reviewed in the 'book review' sections of journals. A purported
eyewitness account added directly to a wiki doesn't benefit from any of
that sort of peer review.
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