[Foundation-l] GFDL Q&A update and question

Robert Rohde rarohde at gmail.com
Fri Jan 9 00:15:27 UTC 2009

On Thu, Jan 8, 2009 at 5:59 PM, geni <geniice at gmail.com> wrote:
> 2009/1/8 Robert Rohde <rarohde at gmail.com>:
>> I concur.  The WMF should clearly state what they anticipate
>> attribution to look like.  Whether one agrees that the WMF position is
>> adequate might end up being an important issue in the decision on
>> whether to support the vote.  However the absence of any guidance
>> about what is appropriate attribution strikes me as a strong reason to
>> be critical.
> Not really. Firstly the WMF is in no position to provide such advice.
> It is not a significant copyright holder and it doesn't write the
> license. Major wikipedia authors and CC are in a far better position.

As a major organization with legal council, the WMF is in a much
better position to understand what the license requires than most
reusers.  Yes, we could ask major Wikipedia authors what they "want"
when Wikipedia content is reused, but that is not necessarily the same
as asking what the license requires and is certainly impractical at
the large scale.

I'm looking for guidance of the sort: Doing X, Y, and Z, is generally
sufficient to comply with CC-BY-SA.  It need not be minimally
sufficient, and probably shouldn't be, since any advice we give ought
to be at a level that is clearly black and white, and not gray.  Maybe
we necessarily limit that advice to text and certain traditional print
mediums, but I do think there needs to be something direct about
acceptable standards for attribution.

It is not sensible to have a proposal that WMF wants to relicense
everything CC-BY-SA and then also say that the WMF is in no position
to say what that means for the reuse of Wikipedia content.

-Robert Rohde

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