[Foundation-l] Fwd: Wikipedia is considering going dark to protest SOPA and PIPA

Tom Morris tom at tommorris.org
Sat Jan 14 10:58:41 UTC 2012

On 14 January 2012 10:15, Bastien Guerry <bzg at altern.org> wrote:
> Ryan Kaldari <rkaldari at wikimedia.org> writes:
>> I think Liam and Dominic are correct on this. Most cultural
>> institutions, especially libraries, are very much on our side on
>> copyright issues.
> I have no doubt on this.
> But see my concrete real-world example, where the Archives of Toulouse
> uses © for pictures while commons uses free licenses.  The black-out
> will leave only © versions in the wild.  The Archives of Toulouse should
> fix this.  I'm just being curious whether this "mistake" is a rare
> occurrence or something more common -- in the latter case, GLAM should
> rethink their strategy, and the GLAM movement should be very clear on
> advocating the importance of free license on top of the importance of
> contributing to the projets.  Just a matter of priority.

I think the concern will be dependent on whether Commons is covered in
the blackout (and whether the 'full' shutdown goes ahead or the
'pop-up plus banners' that seems to be getting most traction on

I'm seeing a rough consensus for action on English Wikipedia, and
German Wikipedians seem to be up for acting in solidarity, but, as
I've said on the page on enwiki, I don't see how enwiki consensus for
a SOPA action ought to bind other proejcts including Commons and the
English sister projects.

As a contributor and admin on English Wikinews, I'd be opposed to
English Wikipedia consensus being used to impose anti-SOPA action on
Wikinews. Of course, if Wikinews and other English projects choose to
participate in the anti-SOPA actions, that's fine. If the Foundation
implement enwiki consensus we get all the downsides of project
independence (having to grit our teeth and welcome banned
sockpuppetting trolls who enwiki have had the wisdom to ban) but
without the independence to be able to decide whether to participate
or not in things like the SOPA thing.

Given the popularity (or lack thereof) of sister projects like
Wikinews, the possible cost of overriding project independence isn't
worth the benefit in having some minor sites taken offline in
solidarity. (Plus, Wikinews might want to cover the reactions to the
Wikipedia shut-down. :P )

Tom Morris

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