[Foundation-l] Attribution survey, first results

Ray Saintonge saintonge at telus.net
Tue Mar 10 00:13:33 UTC 2009

Milos Rancic wrote:
> On Mon, Mar 9, 2009 at 8:03 PM, Sage Ross <ragesoss+wikipedia at gmail.com> wrote:
>> This is a typical pattern when a complex technology is introduced in
>> the presence of a simpler one; it's not a simple matter of
>> replacement, and old technologies (where the infrastructure is easy to
>> maintain) can stick around and even become more significant, even
>> while a complex technology spreads as well.  (See David Edgerton, The
>> Shock of the Old.)
> And Kenyans would care about US and European copyright laws? :))) And
> we would care why they didn't attribute us? In such cases, those who
> care from both sides are maybe ignorants, maybe idealists, but they
> are definitely stupid.

Why should Kenyans care?  Even more, why should Kenyans care about 
patents?  If the purpose of intellectual property was to promote useful 
sciences it's not in the national interest to be exporting royalties 
abroad to high cost nations.

> I am seeing more and more old people who are using Gmail, Facebook,
> Wikipedia every day around me, as well as I am seeing, from time to
> time, young people who are still afraid of computers. Kim Jong Il is
> afraid of traveling by airplane, so he traveled by car 1/3 of the
> world to come to Moscow (a couple of months ago).

The fearful children and Kim Jong Il are edge cases anyway, but I'm glad 
to hear that the Siberian system of roads has improved enough to make 
this posible.   The oldsters are adapting ... as long as significant 
technical knowledge is not required.
> Should we treat such persons systematically or it is better to add
> some exceptional rules? Something like to give a mandate to WMF to
> solve problems of types like giving a formal permission to the
> government of Central African Republic (or to some NGO which operates
> there) to print Wikipedia editions in English and Swahili without any
> attribution (even they don't need it). Or for spoken editions for
> education of blind persons?

Anything but implicit permissions would be a drain on people's time.

> The main story here is about well defined judicial systems. And in
> such systems weaker generic solutions have much bigger potential for
> generic abuse. I may imagine tons of sites with copyright notice:
> "This article had been made by OurGreatNetCompany and <link to the
> article history>Wikipedia authors</link>." Even 1000 of Wikipedia
> authors made more significant contribution than TheirGreatNetCompany.
How much more than that is enforceable?  If OGNC does that, who takes it 
to the next level when a New Great Company only credits the link to OGNC?

The concept needs to be workable beyond first-generation re-users.


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