[Wikimedia-l] WMF Policy and Political Affiliations Guideline

Sarah Stierch sarah.stierch at gmail.com
Fri Aug 3 20:25:20 UTC 2012

Hi -

Actually, it looks like there are a few places where people can share 
their thoughts, etc. about SOPA/Blackoutness:



and other things related but not:

https://strategy.wikimedia.org/wiki/Task_force/Advocacy_Agenda (which it 
looks like you can get involved in!)

I'm sure there are other things too. Risker said it best - let's stick 
on topic instead of going off on tangents. Perhaps even having a place 
to discuss WMF Policy and Political Affiliations Guidelines is ideal. Oh 
wait, there is ;)


As you just shared! Again, this is more inclusive and it can bring your 
concerns to a broader audience who might not be on this mailing list. Ciao!


On 8/3/12 1:17 PM, Andreas Kolbe wrote:
> Sarah,
> Well, for one I was not aware that there was a "reflection" about the
> blackout posted on Meta. A link would be appreciated. Thanks.
> Secondly, four or five months ago I would not have been aware of various
> events on the timeline that preceded the blackout.
> Third, this is an ongoing situation, as the subject of this very thread is
> the proposed policy defining when and how further action like that could be
> taken.
> http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Legal_and_Community_Advocacy/Foundation_Policy_and_Political_Affiliations_Guideline
> Regards,
> On Fri, Aug 3, 2012 at 9:02 PM, Sarah Stierch <sarah.stierch at gmail.com>wrote:
>> How come these concerns weren't brought up months ago when the
>> "reflection" about the blackout was posted to meta?
>> It seems that right now Andreas, you are the main opponent of something
>> that already happened and no one can change.
>> I'd just post your concerns to meta and stop this talking in circles and
>> finger pointing. It's tiring, reads like some conspiracy theory and seems
>> to be losing any traction of game changing that it could.
>> I appreciate hearing your thoughts, as many of us do, I just think they
>> are best preserved on wiki where the majority of participants in the
>> blackout hangout (most aren't active on mailing lists) and can participate
>> in this analysis with you.
>> Sarah
>> Sent from my iPhone
>> On Aug 3, 2012, at 12:52 PM, Andreas Kolbe <jayen466 at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> On Fri, Aug 3, 2012 at 6:00 PM, Todd Allen <toddmallen at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>> We do everything in our power to prevent
>>>> the problem, but it would be absolutely cost prohibitive to do it 100%
>>>> with the difference being that fine grained, and this law gives you
>>>> the right to shut us down if we can't hit 100%. We think on balance
>>>> what we do is good even if something bad occasionally slips through,
>>>> so we can't support that law. And indeed, since this strikes at the
>>>> core of what we do and could shut us down entirely, we must do
>>>> everything in our power to fight the law, including energizing those
>>>> who use our services to speak up against it."
>>> That wasn't the situation though, was it? Just quoting Tim here:
>>> ---o0o---
>>> http://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2012-July/121092.html
>>>> * Geoff Brigham opined otherwise, IIRC.*
>>> Yes, on the basis that "Wikipedia arguably falls under the definition
>>> of an 'Internet search engine'".
>>> <
>> http://blog.wikimedia.org/2011/12/13/how-sopa-will-hurt-the-free-web-and-wikipedia/
>>> The definition was:
>>> "The term ‘Internet search engine’ means a service made available via
>>> the Internet that searches, crawls, categorizes, or indexes
>>> information or Web sites available elsewhere on the Internet and on
>>> the basis of a user query or selection that consists of terms,
>>> concepts, categories, questions, or other data returns to the user a
>>> means, such as a hyperlinked list of Uniform Resource Locators, of
>>> locating, viewing, or downloading such information or data available
>>> on the Internet relating to such query or selection."
>>> http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/112/hr3261/text
>>> It's hard to see how Wikipedia could fall under this definition, but
>>> even if it did, what would be the consequences?
>>> "A provider of an Internet search engine shall take technically
>>> feasible and reasonable measures, as expeditiously as possible, but in
>>> any case within 5 days after being served with a copy of the order, or
>>> within such time as the court may order, designed to prevent the
>>> foreign infringing site that is subject to the order, or a portion of
>>> such site specified in the order, from being served as a direct
>>> hypertext link."
>>> Geoff argued that we would have to manually review millions of links
>>> in order to comply with such a court order. But the definition of an
>>> "internet site" that would be specified under such a court order is:
>>> "[T]he collection of digital assets, including links, indexes, or
>>> pointers to digital assets, accessible through the Internet that are
>>> addressed relative to a common domain name or, if there is no domain
>>> name, a common Internet Protocol address."
>>> We already index external links by domain name or IP address for easy
>>> searching, and we have the ability to prevent further such links from
>>> being submitted, for the purposes of spam control. The compliance cost
>>> would be no worse than a typical [[WP:RSPAM]] report.
>>> Maybe SOPA was a "serious threat to freedom of expression on the
>>> Internet", and worth fighting against, but it wasn't a threat to
>>> Wikipedia's existence.
>>> ---o0o---
>>> So we were talking about Wikipedia – if indeed Wikipedia could legally
>>> be considered a "search engine", which seems a stretch – being given
>>> five (5) days to convert any direct hyperlinks they were specifically
>>> advised of by court order into just alphanumeric, non-clickable links.
>>> No?
>>> So all the talk about "If Wikipedia had had just one infringing link
>>> on it, they could have shut us down entirely" looks like a bunch of
>>> scaremongering nonsense you bought.
>>> Now, who *does* operate a search engine, and would have incurred some
>>> extra costs here?
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*Sarah Stierch*
*/Wikimedia Foundation Community Fellow/*
 >>Mind the gap! Support Wikipedia women's outreach: donate today 

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