[Foundation-l] What's wrong with CC-BY-SA?

Erik Moeller erik at wikimedia.org
Sun Dec 2 06:20:42 UTC 2007

On 12/2/07, Gregory Maxwell <gmaxwell at gmail.com> wrote:
> I've proposed alternative terms in the past, basically allowing
> attribution for collective works (and only collective works) to be
> cited to any party (for example, Wikimedia's Wikipedia) who meets
> certain criteria, one of which would be that they provide the entire
> list of actual contributors.   I.e. "For authorship information see
> XYZ".

Yes, I agree that this approach is preferable, and would support it as
an additional option in future CC-BY-SA revisions.

> And my first hand experience is different.  My experience is Creative
> Commons will perform actions for the benefit of private parties for
> the sake of promoting their brand name.    You might call this
> 'addressing stakeholder needs' but I'm not sure I would.

I think you're misinterpreting a bunch of social interactions that may
have happened. The world isn't divided into the enemies and supporters
of the Truly Good Free Culture Movement. CC's proponents aren't
faceless bureaucrats. Larry Lessig, Joi Ito, Jimmy Wales (who is on
the CC Board) and others all have their own unique and internally
consistent views of how to change the world for the better.

That doesn't mean these are your views, or mine. But recognizing them
as valid interpretations of reality is the first step to extending the
hand of friendship and working with others. I do believe that, in the
vision of the people who run CC, responding to the people who are
changing and challenging existing models of cultural production is key
to doing their job well. That doesn't mean that they do not understand
the reasoning of different communities, or the consequences of
particular decisions.

To work with CC means to engage them in a productive dialogue about
the future of culture, not to shun them as untrustworthy or
unprincipled. Unfortunately, in conflicts like this one, people like
yourself often respond by taking an extreme position which is
untenable and, ultimately, unsuccessful. The result is that you will
not convince others of your beliefs, that you will in fact alienate
those who would listen to you, that the "pragmatic" faction will
strive to quickly execute theirs, and that the resulting outcome is
not the best one possible.

I want to invite you, Greg, to participate in creating the best
possible outcome. That will _not_ be the one you _or_ I are currently
thinking of. This is not about selling out your beliefs; it's about
recognizing that the world out there is different from the world
inside your head.
Toward Peace, Love & Progress:

DISCLAIMER: This message does not represent an official position of
the Wikimedia Foundation or its Board of Trustees.

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