[linux-elitists] Fwd: RFC: Freecell Solver Licence "Change"

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Thu Mar 19 17:22:17 PDT 2009


Quoting Ben Finney (bignose+hates-spam at benfinney.id.au):

> Can I ask that you reference those criticisms (wherever they've been
> spelled out) in the Wikipedia page; perhaps a ???Criticism of the WTFPLs???
> section?

Hmm, problematic.   Let me phrase this carefully.

1.  I respect much about Wikipedia, use it daily, and appreciate its
virtues.  I am quite fond of its supporting community, taken as a whole.

2.  As a matter of personal policy, I always attach my real name and
real contact information to anything anything significant I say online,
e.g., substantive contributions to collaborative encyclopaedias.

3.  There has been an unfortunate history of people who are _not_
pseudonymous participating in Wikipedia then ending up getting their
reputations smeared in public (concerning and as a result of their 
participation) by others who are, and who, because they're pseudonymous,
effectively cannot be held accountable.  (Sorry, I would rather not get
into examples, as I really am trying to avoid getting sucked into a
brawl on this matter.)

There are thus quite a number of articles on Wikipedia that I've 
always considered horribly wrong, but attempting to fix them isn't worth
the likelihood of (1) getting slagged personally for my pains, and (2)
getting into losing edit wars with deliberately nameless people who have
no clue what they're talking about.

The "no original research" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:NOR)
principle also puts limits to Wikipedia's accuracy, in any event:  
Neither of us can go into WP's WTFPL licence page and make the obvious
and vital observation that its wording is horribly broken and shoots its 
intention in the foot, as that would be immediately reverted as
violation of WP:NOR.  Of course, either of us could opine about that 
in the discussion page:  Personally, I'm just not willing.

I'd consider putting a WTFPL article of my own devising on my _own_
Web site, and link it from my knowledgebase's Licensing_and_Law 
category.  However, consider:  Aside from one guy with an attitude
problem who contributed some Window Maker artwork, is anyone actually
_using_ that wretched thing?  Seems like it gets brought up solely as an
ideological debate point.  So, is it really worth valuable debunking
time?



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