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

Erik Moeller erik at wikimedia.org
Sat Mar 21 02:57:02 UTC 2009

2009/3/20 geni <geniice at gmail.com>:
> Now that argument is flawed on a number of grounds but I think I'll
> take the easy option. Where is the link of the following pages:

Try the edit pages.

>> 1) Authors contributed acknowledging that they are licensing their
>> edits under the GFDL;
>> 2) The GFDL has an "at least five principal authors" requirement to
>> give credit on the page title;
>> 3) Wikipedia does not give credit on the page title;
> Strangely there is no requirement that the history and the title page
> not be the same thing.

There's no reason to assume that they are. The GFDL defines Title Page
as the text "near the most prominent appearance of the work's title,
preceding the beginning of the body of the text". The interpretation
that an arbitrarily titled link somewhere on the document (it used to
be called "Older versions") to a difficult to navigate changelog
exists to satisfy the author credit provisions of the GFDL (section
4.B, since you asked) is hardly more defensible than the
interpretation that credit is given to the Wikipedia community ("From
Wikipedia"), or that no credit is given. You're in woolly territory to
begin with, which again re-affirms what I've been saying: we can
identify, through past practices, community-created terms of re-use,
the way that Wikipedia itself implements the GFDL, etc., a reasonable
baseline. Providing credit by linking to the page is a reasonable
baseline. And again, nowhere does a significantly greater expectation
for credit reasonably arise.

>>It's also evident because a GFDL document can be
>> created without a page history while still giving author credit.
> However it cannot be modified without creating a history and that
> history is required to include "new authors" among other things.


>>I am saying that we have established,
>> through historical practice, policy and debate, that crediting
>> re-users via link or URL is a minimally acceptable baseline.
> False. Look up history merging sometime.

Re-parse "minimally acceptable baseline".
Erik Möller
Deputy Director, Wikimedia Foundation

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