[Foundation-l] Wikipedia Attribution and Relicensing

Erik Moeller erik at wikimedia.org
Sat Jan 17 01:55:45 UTC 2009

2009/1/16 Jussi-Ville Heiskanen <cimonavaro at gmail.com>:

> It seems though
> that the _prospect_ of very speculative and indecisively
> defined new ways of showing editors _on_ wikipedia
> pages fringes (not requiring it downstream even), is
> what is really concretely even hinted at...

The downstream requirement that we're talking about right now is:
a) If there are up to five authors, name them directly alongside the article;
b) If there are more than five, you can refer to a copy of the history.

The only issue here is that Wikipedia itself is not consistent with
this principle of 'giving visible attribution when it can be
reasonably expected to do so', because WP itself only ever attributes
by link to the page history. So, the reason to add usernames to the WP
footer in case of a) would be precisely to have consistent rules for
all users of WP content. (It would also simplify determining the five
names for re-users.) I don't view such a change as part of the
proposed license update; I think it needs to be a separate discussion.

In this thread, the argument has been made that these requirements are
going too far, or not far enough. The reason they are formulated as
they are is to be consistent with the expectations set forth by the
GFDL itself, and the re-use guidelines implemented throughout WP and
other WMF projects.
Erik Möller
Deputy Director, Wikimedia Foundation

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