Of all the books to come out of print-on-demand, this
one is possibly the
most problematic. I am certainly not a lawyer but, as I see it, not only is it
using the name of the Foundation without the explicit permission of the
Foundation (and hence, in violation of our trademark), it is attributing the
content to the Foundation. This, in turn, could make us liable for any copyvios
in the book (text and images). Despite numerous requests from Print on Demand
publishers (including Lulu), the Foundation has consistently avoided such an
arrangement for precisely these reasons.
Furthermore, the content was developed as a result of a grant made to the
Foundation with the stated goal of creating *free* content. After considerable
discussions with them, we have made it clear that we intend to keep the books
online and not take them to print. This is precisely what we said we will
*not* do, and it is timed perfectly to coincide with negotiations to get a
considerably larger grant from that same foundation to expand the Wikijunior
I guess this is the free as in beer vs. free as in liberty argument.
The content certainly is free in the sense that it is available to
anybody, and we certainly havn't granted any exclusive publication
rights to a particular user. In this sense, I have no real understand
of why this is such a problem, nor why it would affect any sort of
negotiations. If it was promised to be free as in beer and a grant
given to be able to do that, you should involve the community who is
developing the content and let us know exactly what was promised and how
we can get stuff like this published in a more productive manner.
Besides, the GFDL prohibits restricting publication in precisely the
manner that you are complaining about here.
The only real issue is if a link will be on a project page or not, and
to offer a strong policy on how to accomplish this. By simply
prohibiting links of this nature IMHO is the wrong way to approach this
issue, and this is something that the WMF needs to deal with and allow
at least some sort of path to accomplish the goal: selling content in
some sort of on-line bookstore with links on project pages. At the
moment there is no path other than what this user has accomplished.
This is not commendable. It is the bad result of people acting unilaterally
on behalf of the Foundation without fully understanding the implications of
what they are doing.
This user is not acting unilaterally on behalf of the WMF, but is trying
to be bold and acting on good faith to acomplish a goal that has been
dismissed on this list in the past, where comments encouraging this
specific kind of behavior have been offered and no rebuttal by people
like yourself until the actions occured.
Robert Scott Horning