[Foundation-l] Copies of Wikipedia's articles found on Knol

Jussi-Ville Heiskanen cimonavaro at gmail.com
Thu Jul 31 07:26:49 UTC 2008

Thomas Dalton wrote:
>> I can't see how content distributed under the licenses Knol offers can
>> be reproduced in WMF projects, and I can't see how content produced
>> under WMF's licensing options can be reproduced in Knol.  To me, that
>> raises a serious problem.
> Could you explain that? My understanding was that something released
> under CC-BY could be used pretty much anywhere as long as it's
> appropriately attributed. We attribute all content on Wikipedia, so
> why can't we use it? (The other direction obviously can't be done,
> there's no dispute there, as far as I can see.)

Uhm. I fail to see how that is obvious. So there obviously
is a dispute (that you didn't foresee ;)

Wholesale use of wikimedias content isn't _easily_ feasible
on knol. I would say impossible, even.

Individual contributions have a more nuanced situation,
where there are differing origins of the content.

Consider a case where a contributor has prior to editing
their content into wikipedia, already entered their
content into Public Domain. We do not as far as I know
disallow use of text that has entered into the Public
Domain, else we wouldn't have incorporated that old
Brittish Encyclopaedic ventures text which has its
copyright expired, now would we?

This kind of content can not be considered barred
from being added from wikipedia to knol, or can it?

I at least don't understand how it could be. If the
GFDL's viral nature is retroactive in a fashion that
previously PD work is no longer usable in that
manner, I must say I have understood something
really really wrong.

Now if one reads Mike Godwins text closely it does
say "content produced under WMF's licensing options",
which, I suppose, means text that didn't exist in a
published form before being entered into wikimedia.
That is a very interesting turn of phrase and bears
some thinking about.


Jussi-Ville Heiskanen

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