[Foundation-l] Licensing transition: opposing points of view

Anthony wikimail at inbox.org
Fri Mar 20 15:07:47 UTC 2009

On Thu, Mar 19, 2009 at 11:30 PM, Erik Moeller <erik at wikimedia.org> wrote:

> 3) Part 3: Is such an attribution model consistent with the past
> practice under which authors have contributed to Wikipedia and other
> projects?
> Answer: Yes. This is evident through the current site-wide copyright
> terms, e.g. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Copyrights . Even
> the earliest available version of the Wikipedia:Copyrights policy
> which stated re-users obligations said that users' "obligations can be
> fulfilled by providing a conspicuous link back to the home of the
> article here at wikipedia.com."
> [
> http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Wikipedia:Copyrights&oldid=159593
> ]
> Similar terms have been stated through the history of the policy, as
> well as other language versions.

That's very interesting about the original text (and had I noticed it I
might have saved myself a lot of trouble contributing all those years), but
your last sentence is blatantly false.  By the time many of us, including
myself, started contributing to Wikipedia, that's not what it said.  Rather,
it said [when I started editing] "The latter two obligations can be
fulfilled in part by providing a conspicuous direct link back to the
Wikipedia article hosted on this website." and also said "*The legal
accuracy of the following advice is disputed*".  Furthermore, that text
explicitly applied only to *verbatim copying*.

And finally, Wikipedia:Copyrights is just some page that a bunch of
Wikipedians threw together.  The official WMF position whenever I've asked
how to reuse Wikipedia content has always been "follow the GFDL".

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