On 3/2/06, Anthere <anthere9(a)yahoo.com> wrote:
Anthony DiPierro wrote:
On 3/1/06, Ben Yates <bluephonic(a)gmail.com>
Poking my head in:
I don't have an particular argument, but this whole discussion feels
very wrong. Wikipedia should not be acting like a corporation -- it
is not trying to make a profit; its mission is to spread knowledge.
The Wikimedia Foundation *is* a corporation, and it should act like
one. That said, I'd describe the problem here is more a lack of
Wikimedia acting like a corporation.
A corporate response to this would be simple, they'd refer the
situation to their licensing department - not argue about it on a
public mailing list.
We did not *argue* about it. We *explain* the issue (in particular since
that might help some of you explain yourself the issue in the next cases
I'd certainly describe the exchange between Daniel Mayer and Robert
Bamler to be arguing. But maybe I just misread things.
We also referred the situation to the licensing
department in *gently*
asking Robert to send an email to the board. Generally we assume good
faith from anyone using the logo and the mark, and generally, assuming
good faith is what is bringing in the best and more courtous feedback,
and allow development of harmonious relationships in the future.
*You* gently asked Robert to send an email to the board. You weren't
one of the ones I was talking about. In fact, given the apparent lack
of preplanning over situations like this I think your response was
about as good of one that there could be.
Another solution would be to send a legal notice by a
lawyer for any
infringment to anyone using the logo with no permission. But frankly, do
we really want to do that ?
I don't know what you want to do. What I think would make the most
sense would be to point to a policy page where it explains that anyone
can get a free license for certain non-profit purposes such as this
one. But that's just what I'd do in your situation. What I was
talking about was that the policy be made clear, not that it be one
way or another.
A corporation would have a written trademark
licensing policy which any volunteers who want to
poke their heads
into things could refer to (the referral Ant gave to
board(a)wikimedia.org serves nearly the same purpose, though).
Hmmmm. Correct. This said, I would suggest that the *written* trademark
license policy would be best not widely public. In particular when a
financial agreement is concerned :-)
First of all, by written, I include something written on a computer
and distributed over the internet. Secondly, I was only referring to
the policy, not necessarily the legal agreement itself. Of course,
having the standard agreement available for everyone to see wouldn't
be a horrible thing. There's no reason, in my opinion, that
Wikipedia's standard trademark license shouldn't be as accessible as
their standard copyright license.
Agreements also need to take into
account the situation (is that an agreement for chapter use ? Or for
commercial use ? Or for educational use ?). But, generally I agree, we
need clearer guidelines on the matter and Soufron and others are working
There's no need for the policy to cover all situations, of course.
But it would be nice to have an idea of what kinds of licenses one can
get. I understand you're probably trying to get some price
discrimination among the commercial reusers, but your guidelines could
always be silent on those issues where you intend to charge. (Of
course, that's kind of a shitty thing to do. Some sort of standard
license for commercial redistribution should probably be offered.
Those big shots who can manage to negotiate better deals could still
The board address is also a good way to track
permission and agreements
as all emails are stored in OTRS ;)
Sure, and as I said, referring to the board address was nearly as
good. In fact, I don't really have a problem with your response to
I think it's important that an organization have explicit channels for
dealing with things such as licensing, and that volunteers within the
organization don't step outside of those channels and act
authoritative on those matters. Further, it should be crystal clear
to the public who is authoritative on what matters and who isn't. It
took 15 posts before someone finally said, "contact X to get
authorization". And it's still up in the air whether or not that
authorization is going to be given, because there's no public written
policy on the matter.