On 5/29/06, SCO Estmort <eudaimonic.leftist(a)gmail.com> wrote:
Is there any way we can take action against Baidu
Baike? Surely there is
some legal means of recourse, because they apparently are taking things from
the Chinese Wikipedia wholesale, with utter copyright violations. We have to
deal with copyright issues, I don't see why we should idly stand by and let
ourselves get trampled over with. Since we have been sending cease and
desist notices to small mirrors now, surely this is the ripe target, as
Baidu Baike is state-sponsored by the People's Republic of China.
Well, Baidu is its own company that's NASDAQ listed; it's not an arm
of the PRC government. But there is no doubt the PRC government looks
kindly on its own companies and wants to promote their well-being.
What you say is true, that Baidu is lifting content wholesale and
integrating it into its own corpus without appropriate GFDL license
requirements. The upside is that Baidupedia is generally regarded as a
joke within the PRC and is not getting much traction (for now at
I think it is worth it to send them a letter to the effect that the
GFDL requires such-and-such and that WMF would be happy to supply them
a translation of the policy and provide help to implement the
measures. Remind them first, rather than charge in with legal notices.
And in the process, point out their own "Business Code of Conduct and
Ethics" listed here which has a statement about respecting copyright:
I think we should give up any hope of negotiating with
the PRC entirely, as
they obviously have taken a hostile and insulting stance to us by lifting
material wholesale, then saying it is their copyright.
That's easy to do, because we have never negotiated with the PRC per
se, and there is no real avenue to do so.
This is such a gross
violation of Wikipedia's philosophy, and PRC being a member of the World
Trade Organisation (with compulsory ratification of the WIPO), some form of
action *must* be taken. I do not think this is a time for lega pacifism.
I agree that after the appropriate gestures and made, in the end high
profile PR about this issue may be a good thing. But if you want to
see something that is more likely to get the attention of "big media"
just make sure to highlight at the same time their incredibly "useful"
MP3 search engine - http://mp3.baidu.com
If we could initiate any attempts I think the whole
community will cheer on.
The right to sue is clearly there, perhaps the tediousness is in collecting
copyright holders, but then again I think we can make a point of this case.
The PRC is required to comply, because such a gross violation can mean PRC's
expulsion from the WTO. If anything I think we should treat Baidu Baike as
an enemy, and drop any pretenses or hopes that the PRC will ever willingly