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This is a discussion archive first created in April 2007, although the comments contained were likely posted before and after this date.
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Copyright licensing help

I put together Help:Licensing compatibility (H:LC), a page explaining the status of specific licenses or conditions and listing previous discussions. It currently covers the following topics in alphabetical order, mostly prohibited licenses and conditions because those are discussed more often. Feel free to expand or improve it based on existing policy.

{admin} Pathoschild 02:05:50, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

It is excellent. As m:American non-acceptance of the rule of the shorter term talks about orphan works, I have linked it. Just imagine how beneficial it would be when the US Congressmembers accept the proposed petition there.--Jusjih 17:35, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Very nice. I think we should also mention UN copyrights. Although the resolutions themselves were eventually revealed to be PD the discussion is still relevant to other UN publications and interesting as a case study in general.--BirgitteSB 16:34, 6 April 2007 (UTC)

Diary of Samuel Pepys is added!

At last! After several phases of being busy, and being distracted by other tasks the Diary of Samuel Pepys is added! It may not be perfect (that's why we keep working on Wikis!), but the content is there. It could really do with a decent splattering of Wikipedia links to turn it into a useful tool for anyone studying his work of that period of history. Some notes to all of this can be found on WikiProject_Diary_of_Samuel_Pepys. A big thank you to anyone who helped contribute (either with adding content or offering advice), it was a great help. GregRobson 11:17, 8 April 2007 (UTC)

Great work! I will help with some links.--BirgitteSB 14:53, 9 April 2007 (UTC)

United States Code

Chapter Links

The United States Code has now been indexed down to the Chapter level—that is to say, every Chapter within each of the 49 existing Titles of the Code is now represented online by a link. Most of these are still redlinks. It is nevertheless useful to have a link in place for each Chapter because the full text of each Chapter is available in ASCII text format through the Office of the Law Revision Counsel of the U.S. House of Representatives. It should therefore be a relatively easy matter now to import the full text of any desired Chapter into Wikisource. There will be a substantial cleanup process required insofar as the ASCII version of the Code is formatted according to an idiosyncratic set of rules. Probably a series of scripts could be written (by those skilled in such things; I am not) that would effectively convert the format the House uses into something more suitable for posting here. I encourage anyone interested in the U.S. Code WikiProject to look at the missing Chapters of the Code and consider importing the corresponding text from the U.S. House web site. The Code in its entirety is a massive document, but most individual Chapters are relatively manageable. Tarmstro99 14:20, 20 April 2007 (UTC)

Title 35

Title 35 (Patents) is now complete. Internal links via Template:USC should all be functional, at least within that Title (there are still some redlinks to other Code provisions that aren’t yet online). Please let me know if you find any broken links. Tarmstro99 21:39, 20 April 2007 (UTC)

Licensing form

I'm drafting a comprehensive review of United States copyright law at Wikisource:Licensing form, which I'll use to write a dynamic script to help users determine the copyright status of a work. Please take a look and correct or expand it as required, especially if you have particular knowledge of copyright law. —{admin} Pathoschild 01:18:25, 25 April 2007 (UTC)

New password restrictions

Hello. Brion reports that passwords can no longer be the same as the username. Existing accounts with this problem can no longer edit, and will need to reset their password in their preferences.

The change followed a hostile script on the English Wikipedia that successfully took over several user accounts. If anyone has such a weak password, please see w:password strength and w:password cracking, and consider changing it. —{admin} Pathoschild 21:28:04, 27 April 2007 (UTC)

A password being the same as the username is too weak. I wonder why this was not enforced, but I never do this thing.--Jusjih 23:24, 29 April 2007 (UTC)
Password security has never been a priority in MediaWiki; until last year, users could even have a blank password. —{admin} Pathoschild 00:55:37, 30 April 2007 (UTC)


Collaboration of the Week

Wikipedia does many things wrong. Something it tends to do right lies within its WikiProjects - and one facet of that is the "Collaboration of the Week" feature. And since WS is the size of a half-decent Wikiproject on WP, we could likely do the same. Each week, a new classic author is quickly announced , and all of the "key" editors take ten/twenty minutes to improve that author's collection of works on WS.

Not so much about proofreading and scanning, which are more labour-intensive, though that could also be a part of it - but just a simple "Google, and find one or two more of Rudyard Kipling's poems to add to WS" sort of thing...but with each of our 5/10/20 "core contributors" doing that, we suddenly end up with a half-decent collection by the author - not just their one most popular book.

Similarly it doesn't really lend itself to things like the NSRW and other large collaborations, but more towards picking a "universally acceptable" author of interest, whether it's Author:Peter_Kropotkin (currently 1 work), Author:Blaise Pascal (currently 1 work) or Author:Molière (currently 0 works) Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 22:29, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

Postscript: I threw up a bit of a template for the project Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 23:31, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

I think this is a good idea so long as we just make a list and then work through it instead of voting on it like Wikipedia does.--BirgitteSB 23:02, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
I think this is a good idea, but I wonder how it will not go the same route as Wikisource:Scan parties (that is, how it will not stagnate)? If this can be pulled off, it would be a major benefit to WS, as we could really afford to expand our current holdings of pretty much every author we have listed here. Even if each contributor adds one or two works (maybe more for poets), that very quickly will add up to a number of texts listed under each author's name.—Zhaladshar (Talk) 18:17, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

Wikisource:Text quality images

I propose to change all of these pngs -> svgs

  • 00%.svg -> 00%.svg
  • 25%.svg -> 25%.svg
  • 50%.svg -> 50%.svg
  • 75%.svg -> 75%.svg
  • 100 percent.svg -> 100 percent.svg

I have taken the initiative to do some of them but the embedded structure makes me hesitant to delete the pngs from commons. Have I missed any?

--Cool Cat 21:27, 24 February 2007 (UTC)

Those look fine to me. Pathosbot could update the images on Wikisource, if you add this to Bot requests. —{admin} Pathoschild 23:38:08, 24 February 2007 (UTC)`

Overhaul author template

Recent new features will add three new parameters to the author template, many of them largely redundant. I suggest we make the following changes, which reduce the number of parameters by three, improve bot legibility, simplify use, and add some technical benefits.

Old usage Suggested usage
 |name           =
 |last_initial   =
 |dates          =
 |description    =
 |image          =
 |wikipedia_link =
 |wikiquote_link =
 |commons_link   =
 |defaultsort    =
[[Category:XXXX births]]
[[Category:XXXX deaths]]
 |birthyear      =
 |deathyear      =
 |sort_initial   =
 |sort_name      =
 |description    =
 |image          =
 |wikipedia_link =
 |wikiquote_link =
 |commons_link   =
  • Simplification
    • Remove {{{name}}}; this can easily be taken from the page name, which should always match the name. (Rare exceptions can use an override.)
    • split {{{dates}}} into {{{birthyear}}} and {{{deathyear}}}, which will be used both for the visible dates and the categorization (see categorization discussion).
    • rename {{{defaultsort}}} to {{{sort_name}}}, which is clearer.
    • rename {{{last_initial}}} to {{{sort_initial}}}, to match {{{sort_name}}}.
  • Technical changes
    • Move the styles to the common style sheet. This will allow us to change formatting without editing the template, which forces every author page on Wikisource be re-cached from the database. (Theoretically, it also makes pages load infinitesimally faster; the style sheet is cached once by browsers, but inline CSS must be cached on every page individually.)
    • Output a warning message if a user removes parameters. Leaving blank parameters (as has long been recommended) allows users to create a perfectly-standard new page simply by copying an existing page, and allows bots to easily parse the template (see the style guide).

You can see a live example of the template in my fourth sandbox. Pathosbot can take care of updating uses; I will update documentation and the script files of anyone using TemplateScript. What do you think? —{admin} Pathoschild 00:56:01, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

  • I like it. I'd suggest one small addition: birthyear and deathyear should also get overrides, for authors born, e.g. "c. 1450" or similar.--GrafZahl 16:14, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
    That's a good idea; I'll add {{{birthyear_override}}} and {{{deathyear_override}}}. —{admin} Pathoschild 18:49:37, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
  • No reason not to like the idea, though I wonder if it would be possible then to either run the bot, or otherwise, to automatically every author between birthyear=1150 to birthyear=1350 to "Category:Medieval Authors", etc. But back on the topic at hand, yes, include Graf's overrides. Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 17:06, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
    Hai; I'll have Pathosbot use the authors by era table. —{admin} Pathoschild 18:49:37, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
    Actually, the author template can categorize by era automatically now. —{admin} Pathoschild 01:26:18, 04 March 2007 (UTC)

I definitely support this overhaul. I think it would be a great improvement over the current template and would allow us to more easily use bots to work with author pages (especially in terms of categorization).—Zhaladshar (Talk) 19:58, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

New copyright policy

I've drafted a new copyright policy based on the Definition of Free Cultural Works, which also forms the basis of a draft Foundation licensing policy. This version eliminates ambiguity in the current policy, defining 'free content' and explaining required freedoms and permissible restrictions. Suggested improvements are welcome. —{admin} Pathoschild 05:20:04, 07 March 2007 (UTC)

notification of use
Some requirements and restrictions are permissible on Wikisource:
- simple attribution of the authors, excluding requirements such as notification of use;
This part confuses me, why the copyright/inclusion status is different for a work requiring attribution, than one requiring notification? We can't guarantee our readers will do either, and we can guarantee whether we will do either. Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 07:40, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

If notification is required, this significantly constricts freedom by requiring lengthy and manual efforts to contact the author. Whereas it is easy to attribute authors when publishing a large collection, it is very difficult and time-consuming to contact dozens of individual authors. Further, should the author change email address or other contact information, all works by that author will instantly become unusable by all third parties forever after.
If notification of the author is only requested, there is no problem hosting it on Wikisource. —{admin} Pathoschild 18:14:05, 07 March 2007 (UTC) 18:14, 7 March 2007 (UTC)
Requesting notification of the author does not seem to violate GFDL, does it?--Jusjih 14:48, 8 March 2007 (UTC)
No, but requiring notification would, since there is no such requirement in the GFDL. —{admin} Pathoschild 18:33:04, 08 March 2007 (UTC)

Non-derivative works
I would like to request that any new policy clarify the status of crown copyright works under a "waiver of copyright". See Wikisource_talk:Copyright_policy#UK.2FCanadian_Legislation unsigned by T. Mazzei 06:19, 9 March 2007.

The crown copyright documents are non-derivative works, meaning that their licenses prohibit modification and derivation. There has been much debate on Wikisource and in the Wikimedia community in general over whether this freedom is necessary on Wikisource, with no consensus reached. I suggest starting a new discussion on non-derivative works separately from this draft (which holds the same position on non-derivative works as the current); it can be amended if a consensus is reached to allow non-derivative works. —{admin} Pathoschild 07:35:30, 09 March 2007 (UTC)
Shouldn't we ask the Wikimedia Foundation?--Jusjih 15:47, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
Discussion moved to "No Derivative Works license". —{admin} Pathoschild 02:57:45, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

Since there does not seem to be any further discussion about the proposed changes, does anyone oppose implementation? —{admin} Pathoschild 04:06:36, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

Nope. This definition is much more succinct than the current one. I vote for implementing it.—Zhaladshar (Talk) 19:21, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
Implemented.{admin} Pathoschild 21:04:44, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

Add PD-old-60

I would like to propose inserting PD-old-60 between PD-old-50 and PD-old-70 even though only India and Venezuela have such a copyright term. With American non-acceptance of the rule of the shorter term, having too many pages in PD-old-50 may not be clear which ones will be eligible for PD-old-70. I am unsure how many Wikisource users are from India and Venezuela, but inserting PD-old-60 should not hurt.--Jusjih 15:47, 4 April 2007 (UTC)

I see no reason not to, as long as the categories are in Category:Public domain outside the United States and the template has a disclaimer that it must be accompanied with a license that applies to the United States. —{admin} Pathoschild 18:18:30, 04 April 2007 (UTC)
I have added Template:PD-old-60, associated categories, and links to Chinese Wikisource. Meanwhile, can we consider indexing or categorizing authors' years of deaths?--Jusjih 08:40, 6 April 2007 (UTC)
Authors are categorized by dates of birth and death by the new author template, which will be implemented in the near future. —{admin} Pathoschild 00:21:38, 07 April 2007 (UTC)
Excellent idea. That will allow easy updating.--Jusjih 17:26, 12 April 2007 (UTC)

Categorize subpages

Special:Uncategorizedpages is broken on Wikisource because it was never meant for a project with heavy subpage use. Nonetheless, I think this would be very useful to find uncategorized main pages. I propose fixing it by automatically categorizing all standard subpages to Category:Subpages if a parent page ([[../]]) exists, which could be done by {{header}}. —{admin} Pathoschild 23:40:22, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Sounds like a great idea.--BirgitteSB 13:40, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
'Tis done. —{admin} Pathoschild 07:04:39, 10 April 2007 (UTC)
Hmm, this turns out to yield an unexpected result when a page title contains a “/” character that is part of the name of the work, rather than denoting a subpage. For example, Roger Miller Music, Inc. v. Sony/ATV Publishing, LLC is a court case involving two parties, “Roger Miller Music, Inc.” and “Sony/ATV Publishing, LLC.” The “/” isn’t there to indicate a subpage (there’s only one page in the decision) but rather because one of the parties’ names included that character. Could the recent “fix” perhaps be modified so that it adds pages to Category:Subpages only where they don’t otherwise specify any categories of their own, or is that not possible? Alternatively, is there some marker (perhaps __NOTASUBPAGE__) that could be added to keep pages like Roger Miller Music, Inc. v. Sony/ATV Publishing, LLC from being mis-classified as a subpage? Just a thought. Tarmstro99 21:33, 12 April 2007 (UTC)
I don't know. My inclination is to say that there isn't. I think MediaWiki could definitely afford to have all the specialpages completely revamped with some easy customization (like automatically keep Special:Uncategorized pages from counting subpages without having to use our little hack) and some more magic words to help us with this. As far as the current state of the software is, I think we're just kind of stuck with your example acting like a subpage.—Zhaladshar (Talk) 21:45, 12 April 2007 (UTC)
Thanks, and fixed. False subpages should be decategorised by the time the special page is updated. —{admin} Pathoschild 05:28:27, 13 April 2007 (UTC)

Other discussions


I have placed an essay in my user space explaining why I believe that speeches are subject to copyright in the smae way as other "literary works". Comments are welcome. Physchim62 14:43, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

He means User:Physchim62/Copyright in speeches. Aleator 17:09, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Max Stirner's The Ego and Its Own

Availible here in English if anyone wants to help clean it up.

The Ego and Its Own

--0wn 03:02, 10 February 2007 (UTC)

Standard Industrial Classification Manual 1987

I have started this text and I would appreciate any help anyone is prepared to give. The text is available here SIC Manual. It is mainly just a case of cutting and pasting text from the OSHA website to Wikisource. The text is public domain as it is a work of the US Government (Department of Labour).

First of all thank you for contributing here. One thing I would point out is that the title should probably be Standard Industrial Classification Manual (1987) to follow our disambiguation sytle with the subpages being titled Standard Industrial Classification Manual (1987)/Foo. I am mot familiar with the publication to feel confident in saying what exact name you should use, but you might want look at hoe the United States Code is set-up for comparision. Like the code you can have redirects set-up fo the shorthand--BirgitteSB 14:49, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

A project toddling

I've been busting butt the last month trying to get things sufficiently organized to announce a project called Wikiproject template sharing. That's no mean feat considering it has to take into account the category systems and template libraries of eleven sister projects, and so on.

In it's simplest form, it's aimed at making all of us more productive on wikipedia foundation projects, no matter what wiki we call home. And that applies as well, or will, to foreign language wiki's of all kinds. Unfortunately, the major structural underpinnings of the project are under attack on your own votes for deletion pages[1]. In an amazing display of bad communications, some things ported here were nominated within less than a day of their arrival. I can only tisk-tisk the mindset of such an attack sans a query. I'd appreciate it if you would take some time and perhaps give a quick read to W:WP:TSP as well, and help Vfd do the Right Thing. Else I could have better spent the night in bed, instead of with your cuddly Vfd pages.

There is also a smattering of templates farther down the page as well that impact on our efforts (tlx/tlxw etc.) as well. Be well, and if you have an interest in templates and the productivity they can give you. We'll be glad for all the help we can get. Best regards // FrankB 11:40, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia on BBC Radio 4 this morning

Congratulations Wikipedia, you certainly came out on top in the discussion with a pompous, whingeing representative of the new, fundamentalist Conservopedia

My opinion about Wikipedia has risen from moderate interest to admiration. Keep up the good work unsigned by 11:05, 7 March 2007.

Hello. This is Wikisource (a free library), a sister project of Wikipedia (a free encyclopedia). However, I'm glad you think so highly of our sister project, which many of us also contribute to. :) —{admin} Pathoschild 18:18:24, 07 March 2007 (UTC)

Help implementing new header format

Following previous discussion ("Tweak standarised header" (Scriptorium, October 2006), "Implement new header" (Bot requests, March 2007)), Pathosbot will convert all pages using the former {{header}} standard to the transitional {{header2}} format, then switch pages back to {{header}} once the new format has been merged into the old name. The bot is using heuristic regular expressions; although I expect a very low error rate due to constant refinement in past bot runs, the sheer number of pages involved (37,753) means that many pages may not be parsed correctly.

Due to the magnitude of the task, I'm looking for interested users to help review the bot's edits during the transition (the second phase doesn't need human review). I will post short lists of edits to the bot's user space for each interested user, spreading them out so nobody is overloaded with a huge list at any one time. The transition will be slow enough that the volunteers won't need to take too much time out of their day to review.

A typical edit will look like this; since the changes are all in one place, most pages can be reviewed in under a second once one is used to it. You can report any errors, improvements, or incorrect parsing in the discussion at Wikisource:Bot requests, and I will make the necessary adjustments to the code. Please state whether you'd like to participate throughout the whole transition, for a limited time, or review a specific number of pages. If you get tired of it later, you can of course notify me and stop reviewing.

If you're interested, please comment in the discussion at Wikisource:Bot requests. I will review all remaining edits, so the more volunteers the better. ;) —{admin} Pathoschild 06:34:17, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

How has Wikimedia Changed your Life?

This message is being crossposted around village pumps and mailing lists - apologies if you receive it more than once!
Have any of the Wikimedia projects had an effect on you in real life, or do you know of someone, or some group of people, who use our projects in real life? If so, we want to hear from you at m:Success Stories - How has Wikimedia Changed your Life?. The hope is that this page can become somewhere to which we can point members of the press so that they can immediately get an idea of the usefulness of our projects. Please, take a look, and add your stories! Martinp23 16:11, 10 April 2007 (UTC)

Non-derivative works

Crown copyright

As per above, I'm starting a new discussion regarding whether or not licenses with "no derivative works" clauses are compatible with Wikisource.

I come at this issue from the perspective of Crown Copyright legislation for which a "waiver" of copyright has been passed which allows reproduction with a few requirements, the main ones being that the document must state that it is not an official version, and that the document must be reproduced with "reasonable accuracy". Obviously this second requirement would seem to conflict with the GFDL, which allows users to modify (create derivative works) at will, provided proper attribution.

Currently there is no policy, or at least an inconsistant one, with regards to licenses with "no-derivative works" clauses are compatible with Wikisource. As such, documents are being deleted or kept seemingly at random based on whether or not the editor feels that that a particular version of such a license is or is not compatible with GFDL. Case in point: Canadian legislation (post 1956) - kept (for now), UK legislation (post 1956): deleted.

I did a quick search of the archives for the last year to determine what, if any, the previous concensus was. The following links go to previous discussions of the question, particularily as it relates to Crown Copyright. There was no strong consensus, although there was a slight bias towards banning these licenses, at least as they apply to UK legislation.

General Policy:

British (and Canadian) Legislation:



Australian Legislation:

Constitutional Documents:

Not about "no derivative works", but I've noticed alot of constitutional documents that would appear to be copyright (were written in the last couple decades) have been added to Wikisource, however I do not have enough international copyright knowledge to say whether or not there are any copyvios.

Possible home for rejected documents (provided they don't require GDFL):

For my part, I think that these licenses should be allowed, at least in the case of legal documents, despite the apparent conflict with GFDL. The reasoning being that in the case of legal documents, any modifications would either be to such an extent that it becomes a "new work", or would result in a document that was a deliberately misrepresentation of the law (i.e. fraud), in which case it becomes a criminal issue, not simply a copyright copyleft issue.

I would also like to repost the comment by user:Physchim62 which I agree with completely:

My personal view (although I fear that I am in a minority) is that this sort of "accurate reproduction" license is compatible with Wikisource, where we aim for, well, accurate reproductions of texts. There is no reuse restriction either in the UK or Canada. An "accurate reproduction" allows for changes in format: these are obligatory for UK laws, where the Queen's Printer imprint must be removed before redistribution. To say that we cannot infinitely modify the text is, IMHO opinion, beside the point: apart from the fact that an infinitely modified law is worthless, there are many restrictions on the modification of images of real people which are not deemed to be conflicting with the GFDL.

It seems ironic, to say the least, that a site dedicated to providing a source for accurate texts cannot accept these documents because they are required to be accurate. Another bit of irony and inconsistancy: on reading up on this topic I read the actual text of the GFDL license. At the top it says "Everyone is permitted to copy and distribute verbatim copies of this license document, but changing it is not allowed" (no derivative works). The text was hosted on Wikimedia.

Anyway, if the decision is to remove "no derivative" licensed works, please note that user:Jusjih added "Even after the Crown Copyright expires, the Reproduction of Federal Law Order still applies indefinitely" to the Canadian Legislation template. If this is true, then all Canadian legislation (and court decisions), not just post 1956, will have to be removed. --T. Mazzei 04:45, 10 March 2007 (UTC)

Allowing non-derivative works would require changing the Wikisource global license. This is perfectly fine by me; I think the GNU Free Documentation license is very poorly suited for Wikisource. Instead, we should use a strict copyright policy and alert users that content is released under a variety of licensing conditions (GFDL, Creative Commons, public domain, et cetera). However, this is a significant change that would require the permission and oversight of the Foundation. —{admin} Pathoschild 05:31:23, 10 March 2007 (UTC)
I mainly agree with the sentiments expressed above. However I think it is a bit more complicated. I think all derivatives, outside of transalations, are pretty much irrelevant to Wikisource. I also think it a bit of a mistake to call this a "non-derivative" issue as that is a piece of "free-culture" terminology with bad conotations which is not actually used in these licenses as far as I am aware. I would be particularly interested in understanding the Canadian issue mentioned above. Since Canada has multiple official languages I wonder how they can legaly forbid derivatives without some exception for translations. I imagine most of the federal laws are given in official translations, but I cannot imagine that all the court decisions at every level are provided in mulitple languges in a timely manner. Also think need to have a solid plan of what we would like to do instead of the GFDL before addressing this with the Foundation. Honestly it is not very accurate to describe this as a GFDL project anyways. The actual contributions which are made here under the GFDL are very much in the minority. Most contributions of the editors here would qualify as uncopyrightable. We would probably only have convince ten people to dual license their contributions (one of main ones being Pathoschild who seems open-minded above) as well as adopting a policy of allowing fair dealing citations in the "notes" (with some common-sense word limit) to minimize the GFDL material to a completely insignificant amount.
So if this is truly something people are interested in looking into I think two basic things need to be done to start. First we need conclusively determine how translations are to handled in the various cases were alterations to the text are forbidden. Second we need to identify which copyleft license is significantly better than the GFDL at accomidating the restrictions on these sorts texts in original translations. Assuming we can figure those two things out then need to decide how license the project cotributions (header etc.) as well as determine if that or a different license would be more suitable for database rights. If these things can be done and the community as whole supports this idea, I would be willing to campaign for it. However if we cannot find a clear way to accomodate translations for these texts, I will personaly be ambivalent and believe the issue has very little chance of sucess. --BirgitteSB 19:54, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
You're right Birgitte, these aren't true "no deriviative" licenses in the vein of the GFDL text hosted on Wikimedia, they merely place some restrictions on the type of derivatives (i.e. they must be "reasonably accurate"). In Canada, the Reproduction of Federal Law Order merely requires that "...due diligence is exercised in ensuring the accuracy of the materials reproduced..." This is somewhat ambiguous, but the intent seems to be that if the document is an "accurate translation", then it is allowed. The British waiver of copyright goes one step further in requiring that translations that are to be issued to the public be performed by a "competent translator". --T. Mazzei 02:58, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
Works that only allow derivatives and modifications with ambiguous conditions and the reserved right to legal action are equivalent to 'non-derivative'. For example, the Reproduction of Federal Law Order would not allow free parodies, since exact reproduction is not the intention. If we want to allow non-derivative works, that is fine; however, we should not state that pseudo-non-derivative or reproduction-only works freely allow derivatives. —{admin} Pathoschild 03:58:06, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
WRT their compatibility with this site, yes, they probably do boil down to the same thing. But there is a distinction to be made between a license that says "you shall not modify this text" and one that says "you can modify this text providing..." The Canadian order was (purposely?) written in ambiguous language. Depending on your level of m:copyright paranoia, this allows reproduction under either the widest or narrowest scope of the term "accuracy". [Regarding parodies,] I don't believe I said that. I was talking about translations, where exact reproduction (of the content, but not the form) is the intention --T. Mazzei 04:44, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
Regarding translations again, copyright (usually) gives the copyright holder sole rite over any translation of his works (i.e. Canadian Copyright Act, section 3.(1)(a)). So if the work is truly "non-derivative" (meaning no derivatives whatsoever, unlike the Crown Copyright waivers), then translations probably apply as well. Not that that seems to be the intent of many of these licenses (ex. the GFDL license text), merely a side-effect of the assertion, so perhaps in some cases permission can be obtained. --T. Mazzei 04:44, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
@Pathoschild: It would be completely misleading to describe a license which allows translations as a non-derivative license. Perhaps these licenses will end up being too restrictive for us even with translations allowed, but they are not the same as a non-derivative license. At the least we should clearly determine what restrictions are the one that push the balance scale to "non-free" for future reference. I don't think whether parodies are allowed is a good test, because I believe that is an issue in any system with "droit d'auteur". I believe the part of law you have a problem with is dealing with w:Moral rights (i.e. the right to the integrity of the work). Since as far as I am aware there is no expectation amoung the free content movement that authors should give up the moral rights accorded to them in France to be condsidered free-content, I don't see why such a provision should be a problem when written into a license instead of a national law. Of course IANAL, and I could be misinterperting that entirely.--BirgitteSB 18:05, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
There is no mention of translation in the Reproduction of Federal Law Order; it merely grants permission to "reproduce [...] provided due diligence is exercised in ensuring the accuracy of the materials reproduced and the reproduction is not represented as an official version." There is no release of the rights to derivation (including translation). —{admin} Pathoschild 01:18:36, 13 March 2007 (UTC)
The wording of the order is vague, as I mentioned above. It does not say "exact reproduction", it says "accurate reproduction". Whether or not an "accurate translation" is an "accurate reproduction" is simply not clear. That being the case, I have sent an email to the Department of Justice requesting clarification specifically on whether or not the Order allows translation. I will be greatly surprised if the answer is no, since (1) I believe the intent of the order is to protect the content of the document, and not the form, and (2) the British waiver on which the order is based specifically allows translation. --T. Mazzei 02:48, 13 March 2007 (UTC)
Shouldn't we ask the Wikimedia Foundation?--Jusjih 15:47, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
The Foundation has recently announced a draft licensing policy which prohibits non-derivative works. However, it allows for the development of an "Exemption Doctrine Policy [...] that, in accordance with United States law [...], permits the upload of copyrighted materials that can be legally used in the context of the project".
This Exemption Doctrine Policy seems to be intended for fair use and similar unlicensed conditions (probably to accommodate existing non-free content on large Wikipedia wikis, such as fair use on the English Wikipedia), not non-derivative works. In addition, an Exemption Doctrine Policy is explicitly non-free, and the draft policy requires that it be applied minimally if at all. Furthermore, some Foundation oversight over any transition from free to pseudo-free is implied: "The Foundation resolves to assist project communities in need of an EDP in the process of developing it. The General Counsel is directed to coordinate this process." Therefore, as far as the Foundation is concerned, non-derivative works are prohibited but might, just might, be permissible.
Before we ask the Foundation (and all the controversy that will involve), we should find out whether or not we want to. Some discussion I found with some searching:
{admin} Pathoschild 02:57:37, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
According to the current revision of the Wikisource:Copyright policy page the Fair use doctrine don't apply for whole text works. If that information is correct, I think that this entire thread is er... improductive. Lugusto 03:25, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
The thread is about non-derivative works, not fair use. My above comment mentioned the possibility of creating an "Exemption Doctrine Policy" to allow non-derivative works, but listed disadvantages in doing so. —{admin} Pathoschild 04:43:29, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

After much delay, I have finally received a response to my inquiry regarding the Reproduction of Federal Law Order and translations. Much to my surprise, the official line is that translations are not covered under the Order. The response is reproduced below:

----- Original Message ----- 
From: NCR GMA-Copyright.Droitdauteur <>
To: [edited] 
Sent: Friday, March 30, 2007 3:09 PM
Subject: RE: Reproduction of Federal Law Order

Good afternoon [edited], 

Thank you very much for your email. Please accept our apology for the delayed response 
since your email was believed to have been answered. In regards to your questions, 
please  note that Translations are not covered under the Reproduction of Federal Law 
Order. You  will therefore need to obtain 'permission' to translate any Order through 
our office.

The general rule is anyone wishing to use, reproduce, adapt, revise and/or translate 
Crown owned works is obliged to request permission with our office by completing and 
submitting our Application for Copyright Clearance on Government of Canada Works also 
found at the URL: 
Information on how to properly fill out the form is also found on the website.

Before we can effectively process your request, we will need to know the material you 
are requesting permission for (ex. title of work, URLs, etc.). Any additional 
information on the final use of the government work is also be very helpful. The form 
asks for specific information, which is very helpful in determining the manner in which 
the government's information will be used and whether permission should be granted or 

Upon receiving the application, we will review it and offer the author department (ex. 
DND, Health Canada, or Justice Canada in your case) our recommendations as to whether 
the permission should be granted or denied. It is the author department that  will 
determine whether its work can be reproduced and which terms and conditions will apply. 
You will receive confirmation of their decision in writing.

Should you have any questions, feel free to contact our office.


The Crown Copyright and Licensing Office

--T. Mazzei 18:11, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

This response is a good example of why such ambiguous wording is unacceptable and no different than non-derivative licensing. Even when it seems that translations and other derivation would be acceptable, the copyright holder retains the right to declare any such derivative unlawful, which exposes the derivative author to potential litigation under copyright law. The Wikimedia Foundation aims to provide free content; content under such licenses is obviously not very free. —{admin} Pathoschild 01:27:34, 01 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes, but the point of this topic is whether or not we should re-write policy to allow these "non-free" licenses. No one, so far as I can see, has objected.--T. Mazzei 02:16, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
I object to allowing "non-free" licenses. Wikisource is unique in being a free content library, as this quotation from the Licensing policy FAQ draft words rather well:
We are a project built on a principled mission—to create and encourage free content. Because of this, our policies are intended to further that mission, and not just to keep us from getting sued. Using images under licenses other than the ones we choose to accept may not get us in legal trouble (although in some cases they definitely can), but they don't help us with our goals. There are plenty of projects on the web that you can access for no charge, and some of them are pretty good. But we are unique in being free content, not only available without payment but for anyone to use and modify as they see fit. Allowing everything that won't necessarily get us sued makes us just another site you don't pay to use.
{admin} Pathoschild 03:47:34, 02 April 2007 (UTC)
I agree with Pathoschild, this material appears not to fit our charter given the restrictions. ++Lar: t/c 04:50, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
I take it then you have changed your mind since March 10th. I still think its ridiculous to eliminate from Wikisource the entirety of modern British and Canadian law simply because it cannot be adapted to interpretive dance, but based on what I've read thus far I'm willing to accept that the Foundation has a rather dogmatic interpretation of "free", and the possibility of getting them to allow these documents is next to nil. If there are no further objections, I think we should update the Wikisource:Copyright policy to this effect and begin purging any remaining documents, rather than to continue to leave this subject in limbo. --T. Mazzei 01:50, 3 April 2007 (UTC)
I was originally uncertain about non-derivative works, but never in favour of ambiguous licensing. I changed my mind about the former after doing some research. Fortunately, the copyright policy already prohibits these, so there is nothing to update and nothing is in limbo. —{admin} Pathoschild 06:56:32, 03 April 2007 (UTC)
re "ambiguous licensing": all licenses discussed were unambiguously a form of non-derivative. The ambiguity was whether or not translations qualified as a derivative under the license. That has since been clarified.
re "copyright policy": Oops, I hadn't read the policy since it was updated. There are still a number of documents to purge (many of them posted by me), such Wikisource:Constitutional documents: anything for Canada after 1957 (or all Canadian law, depending on whether or not you agree with user:Jusjih that the Order applies to public domain documents as well).--T. Mazzei 23:56, 3 April 2007 (UTC)
Aslo all of the Wikisource:Case law for Canada, Great Britain, and probably Australia, and a number of Wikisource:Historical documents, etc. Also note that a good third of the documents (not counting the US) under Wikisource:Constitutional documents, as well as a number of documents in Wikisource:Historical documents, Wikisource:Bilateral documents, etc, are written in the last 50 years, with no copyright status indicated.--T. Mazzei 00:12, 4 April 2007 (UTC)

I recieve a further email from the Canadian copyright office regarding Crown Copyright:

----- Original Message ----- 
From: NCR GMA-Copyright.Droitdauteur 
To: [edited] 
Sent: Tuesday, April 10, 2007 7:54 AM
Subject: RE: Reproduction of Federal Law Order

Good morning [edited], 

Sorry for the delay, I actually was awaiting to hear back from a legal counsellor at Justice 
Canada for further clarification into your question. 

The Legal counsellor had the following to add: 

"The Reproduction of Federal Law Order (RFLO) covers statutes, regulations and the decisions 
of federal courts and tribunals.  The statutes and regulations are subject to Crown copyright 
by virtue of the Crown prerogative, with the result that they are subject to perpetual Crown 
copyright.  The published decisions of federal courts and tribunals are subject to Crown 
copyright, in our view, because they were published under the direction or control of the 
Crown (s. 12 of the Copyright Act).  The Crown copyright in published decisions of federal 
courts and tribunals would presumably expire in 50 years and the decisions would fall into 
the public domain.  

( - Statutes and Regulations are covered by Crown Copyright Forever)
( - Decisions of Federal courts and tribunals fall into the public domain after 50 years)
On the specific question of whether the RFLO includes a permission to translate, your are 
correct, i.e., the RFLO extends only to reproduction, not to translation, with the result that 
permission to translate would be necessary -- unless the work in question was a decision of a 
federal court or tribunal, published under the direction or control of the Crown some 50+ years 

Please let me know if this does not answer your question. 

Have a nice day. 

The Crown Copyright and Licensing Office

So, according to this legal counsellor, Crown Copyright on Canadian legislation is perpetual, while federal courts and tribunal decisions are PD 50 years after publication. This is backed up by this site on Crown Copyright. According to that site, similar perpetual Crown Copyright on " any work prepared or published by or under the direction or control of [Her] Majesty or any Government department" would also apply to the Commonwealth countries of Antigua and Barbuda, Channel Islands, Dominica, Gambia, Kiribati, St. Kitts-Nevis, Swaziland, Tuvalu. In Barbados, the Crown has rights in perpetuity in respect of works of Barbadian folklore. unsigned by T. Mazzei 01:02, 11 April 2007.

I would have to look into this, but the United States typically does not recognize perpetual copyright; works will fall into the US public domain at the end of the applicable US copyright term. —{admin} Pathoschild 01:55:20, 11 April 2007 (UTC)
FYI, the legal terminology used is not perpetual "Crown copyright", but Crown prerogative rights (not, I imagine, that it would make any difference to American law). Copyright expires, but the crown maintains perpetual 'prerogative rights' for various documents. A closer look at the site indicated reveals that all commonwealth countries with Copyright legislation 'similar or the same as' U.K. Copyright Act, 1956 also maintain prerogative rights, though in this case mostly limited to acts of parliament (as in Canada). If perpetual copyright applies to this project, this expands the list of countries which will never be able to contribute Crown documents to this site to include the Bahamas, Belize, Fiji, Grenada, Guyana, Nauru, St. Lucia, St Vincent, the Grenadine for sure, and very likely also Australia, Bangladesh, Botswana, Cyprus, Ghana, India, Kenya, Malaysia, Malta, Nigeria, Pakistan, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Tanzania, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. --T. Mazzei 02:34, 11 April 2007 (UTC)
Even though the Reproduction of Federal Law Order does not expire, I consider that once the Crown Copyright expires, making derivative works of Canadian law orders seems to be permissible, but due care is expected to ascertain the accuracy of the law orders used, such as quoted, and the derivative works cannot be misrepresented as official. These would resemble moral but not economical rights. We should consider revising Template:Legislation-CAGov to exclude copyrighted Canadian law orders but still remind that the Reproduction of Federal Law Order does not expire like copyright. These are just my opinion.--Jusjih 17:07, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
The Reproduction of Federal Law Order (RoFLO) does not "expire" (at least until if and when Parliament decides to revoke it), but it does no longer apply when Crown Copyright works go into public domain (after 50 years). Once they are in public domain, these works can be used as other public domain works. The problem is (according to the quoted lawyer, and supported elsewhere) is that certain types of documents—Acts of Parliament, but possibly other related documents—never fully enter the public domain, since the Crown maintains "perogative rights". What exactly these rights are I don't know, I'm not a copyright lawyer, but my understanding is the Crown maintains at the very least their "moral rights", and as a result the documents definitely aren't free. If we can even host any Canadian legislation at all, which is not clear at this point, then the Template:Legislation-CAGov should be updated to either remove reference to the RoFLO or to state that it can not be used as a valid license under Wikisource. It should also be updated to state that Canadian Acts of Parliament are subject to perpetual perogative rights by the Crown, and are not free, in Canada, but also anywhere else that recognises perpetual copyright. --T. Mazzei 07:45, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
WRT that last comment about "anywhere else that recognises perpetual copyright", I have a feeling that "anywhere else" either is, or because of "legal uncertainty" will have to be assumed to be is "anywhere that is a signatory to the Berne Convention" (i.e. practically everywhere), unless they have specific legislation against perpetual copyright. Meaning perhaps free in the US, and maybe one or two of other countries, but nowhere else.--T. Mazzei 08:00, 17 April 2007 (UTC)

Moral rights

I am not convinced that we need to pay any attention to "moral rights" in evaluating if a work is "free content". If works encumbered by "moral rights" or their equivalent are not free content, than no free content can exist in either Germany or France as such rights are irrevocable. Since the free content movement is active in both those countries, I do not think it is an issue.--BirgitteSB 23:23, 17 April 2007 (UTC)

I don't know about the law in France and Germany, but I do know (according to the lawyer above) that because of the Crown's "perogative rights", derivatives are not allowed without permission. I said "at the very least their "moral rigts": I don't know if they have to prove harm, or if they can simply say on a whim that any specific derivative is a violation of thier "perogative rights". If the latter, this would seem to violate the Wikisource:Copyright policy of this site just as much as a physical license (i.e. the RoFLO) with the same effect.
As to moral rights, I agree completely that we shouldn't "have to" worry about them. However, the text of the definition of "free" used in this site's policy says that "the license must not limit the freedom to distribute a modified version (or, for physical works, a work somehow derived from the original), regardless of the intent and purpose of such modifications." (emphasis mine). This stands in complete opposition to "moral rights" where, according to Berne "the author shall have the right to claim authorship of the work and to object to any distortion, mutilation or other modification of, or other derogatory action in relation to, the said work, which would be prejudicial to his honor or reputation". If what you imply about France and Germany is true, and they maintain perpetual "moral rights" for all authors, then you are correct in saying that no document produced in those countries is free—according to the definition used in formulating this sites policy—and, by extension, all such documents should be removed.--T. Mazzei 00:35, 18 April 2007 (UTC)
If the definition of "free" cannot be used in France, where I am certain such rights are irrevocable, I cannot take it seriously at all. If that is the case, I find that text no more than a joke. Looking at the, the only mention of moral rights is an aside in the FAQ. In that case the author seems to be implying that the US is abnormal for not having moral rights. So no answers there.--BirgitteSB 18:50, 18 April 2007 (UTC)
Moral rights are legal restrictions and are not related to the freedom of the work itself. In the same way that an author cannot publish hate speech in Canada, a reuser cannot distort an author's creation to defame them in droit d'auteur states. Thus, such works may indeed be free as defined while still being subject to legal limitations in particular countries. —{admin} Pathoschild 19:48:01, 18 April 2007 (UTC)
While that may be your interpretation of how the definition of free should work (and I would agree with you), that is not how the text reads. It reads, and I quote, free to distribute derivatives "...regardless of the intent and purpose of such modifications" subject to the listed exceptions. The only listed exceptions are attribution, share alike, and not allowing "technical restrictions" (requiring access to source code, etc). The document further states that "In order to be considered free, a work must be covered by a Free Culture License, or its legal status must provide the same essential freedoms enumerated above." (i.e. including modification regardless of intent and purpose) and then reinforces this point with "The work itself must not be covered by legal restrictions (patents, contracts, etc.) or limitations (such as privacy rights) which would impede the freedoms enumerated above". To paraphrase BirgitteSB, the text, as it is written, is a joke. --T. Mazzei 06:11, 19 April 2007 (UTC)
The definition of freedom only applies to restrictions attached to the work itself. This means that, for example, it is not free if the author released it under a license that does not allow reproduction. However, laws that affect the work locally do not affect the freedom of the work itself. For example, a public domain work may be banned in certain countries, but it remains public domain and free.
Similarly, moral rights are not 'attached' to the work. Moral rights are created by local laws that affect works within the countries that recognize them. A work produced in France (where moral rights are recognized) which is then exported to the United States will not have moral rights in the United States. Conversely, a work produced in the United States (where moral rights are not recognized) and exported to France will have moral rights.
Thus, moral rights have no relevance to the freedom of the work itself. —{admin} Pathoschild 18:14:37, 19 April 2007 (UTC)

(outdent) re: definition only applies to restrictions attached to the work itself: I agree, local restrictions on speech not "attached" to the document (hate laws, libel, etc) are not (or at least should not) be covered by the definition. However, while that may be an underlying assumption in the document, it is nowhere stated that this is the case. However I will not argue the point.

re: Moral rights are not "attached" to the work. Moral rights are attached to the work in the same way that copy rights are attached. You do not (potentially) violate the authors moral rights by modifying any work, but by modifying his work. Just like you do not (potentially) violate his copy rights by copying any work, only his work.

re: "Moral rights are created by local laws that affect works within the countries that recognize them. A work produced in France (where moral rights are recognized) which is then exported to the United States will not have moral rights in the United States." Replace the term "moral rights" with "copy rights", and the US with a jurisdiction (real or imaginary) that does not recognise copy rights, and you have just proven that copy rights do not make a document "unfree". Local variations just means that a document may be "free" in one jurisdiction, while being "unfree" in another. If the goal is to have documents that are free for everyone, then unfree in one jurisdiction means unfree, period, at least as far as this site is concerned. If, on the other hand, free means simply free in the US, then there is no issue with moral rights or other restriction, even in the case they affect every single individual outside of the US. I would hope this site would take a position somewhere in the middle.--T. Mazzei 19:06, 19 April 2007 (UTC)

Wikisource does take a middle ground, because it's not even remotely feasible to require freedom everywhere (not even Commons requires that). We require one of the following, which cover virtually all copyright cases on Wikisource. For example, works by the United States federal government are accepted because they are released into the public domain.
  • permission by the copyright holder to release under a GFDL-compatible license;
  • a release into the public domain by the copyright holder;
  • copyright expired (not invalid) in the United States.
These three allow content to be "freely viewed, used, distributed, modified, and exploited by anyone, in any form, and for any purpose (including commercial exploitation) without exception and without limitation (except as explicitly allowed [by the copyright policy])", although users must check their local laws. This last is the reason we provide detailed explanations (with license templates), rather than simply saying "This work is free in the US" like Project Gutenberg does. —{admin} Pathoschild 20:11:26, 19 April 2007 (UTC)

Similarly, moral rights are not 'attached' to the work. Moral rights are created by local laws that affect works within the countries that recognize them. Your position appears to end up maintaining that since works encumbered by moral rights in France are the freeest possible works in France it is acceptable to call them "free content" yet at the same time equally encumbered works outside of France cannot be called "free content." This is based on your claim that moral rights are not attached to a work, but instead I suppose attached to the juristiction. This claim is simply incorrect. Although such rights are irrevocable in France, some other juristictions in droit d'auteur states allow moral rights to be waived. This allowence makes it clear to me the rights are attached to the work itself.

The bottom line is "free content" must be defined in way that is based on what can be practically done with a work, not on the terminology or juristiction of the restriction. If a work with the attributes A, B, and C is how we define a free work, than we cannot require works to also have attribute D where available or else be classified unfree. Although Wikisource does not require works to be free "everywhere"; it also does not tie itself so closely to US law as Pathoschild implies. The servers are in the US, which only means we cannot infringe on US copyright law not that we define free by US copyright law alone. Our goal of being a free content library is based on the principle of free content which is tied to no particular juristiction and must be defined outside of any one juristiction. Our goal of being a free content library is a real and practical goal and therefore the principle of free content we subscribe to must not be solely a Utopian idea but a prinicple which can work in the trenches of a number of different juristictions while being based no juristiction in particular.--BirgitteSB 21:19, 19 April 2007 (UTC)

Are you suggesting that Wikisource must not accept any freedom that is invalid in at least one country in the world? I'm having difficulty understanding your position, so I may be completely misinterpreting your comment, but this seems to imply the following changes:
  • delete any work that is banned anywhere (ie, reproduction and distribution not allowed);
  • delete all works currently hosted because of the 1923 copyright cutoff in the United States, which is not applicable elsewhere;
  • delete all manifestos and public speeches, which are currently permitted under (dubious) assumptions about United States copyright law;
  • delete any work that might be considered hate propaganda in Canada (such as, say, historical propagandist documents);
  • delete content related to the Nazi party (which is banned in Germany, Austria, Hungary, Poland, Czech Republic, France, and Brazil);
  • retag all works, even those in the public domain, to require attribution and the author's permission (both of which are permanent moral right, even for uncopyrighted works).
If I'm misinterpreting your position, please correct me. :) Note that I agree that free content should be defined outside jurisdictions, which is why I don't agree with taking moral rights into account— these are legal restrictions limited to a few jurisdictions. —{admin} Pathoschild 21:51:44, 19 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes you misunderstand my position. I think our goal as and english language free library is to host works which are free in an English-speaking juristiction (my personal preference would be the home juristiction, but any of the target juristictions would work if they are properly tagged). Of course if US copyright law means it would be illegal for us to host a particular work, we would not be able to keep an otherwise free work.--BirgitteSB 14:32, 20 April 2007 (UTC)

As far as my position:
  1. The definition at is bogus (or at best misleading) so you may want to reconsider using it, or at the very least clarify how it applies (and does not apply) to this site.
  2. Since 1, and the goal of this site is free documents for all, a little more thought needs to go into when a document is "free" enough for this site, without simply reverting to the US-centric "if it's free in the US, then it's free for everyone" (which was, I think, Birgitte's issue).
  3. As far as moral rights, correct me if I'm wrong, but every signatory to the Berne convention (except the US, which likes to sign treaties and then ignore the parts it doesn't like anyway) gives the author moral rights to his creation for at least the length of the economic rights. So there are more than a few jurisdictions affected. While most of the time it doesn't matter since both rights expire at the same time, there would still be issues for those jurisdictions where these rights do not expire with economic ones (in how many jurisdictions does this occur?), or for other situations, such as where the economic rights are waived but moral rights are not (or nothing is said one way or another about moral rights).
  4. Economic (copy) rights, moral rights, and Crown prerogative rights are the only rights attached to works that I am aware of (though I'm sure there are more). As far as general restrictions on speech, such as hate speech, works which oppose/contradict a government, etc. my position is that the work itself is free, it is the idea represented within the work which is not free. I.e. the objection is not that the idea is expressed within a specific text (moral rights), but that that idea is expressed at all. Therefore I have less objection to including these documents then those that are covered under moral rights.
As far as your list:
  • Category:PD-1923 I think most of the works covered under this category are PD anyway. However you might want to take a closer look at any documents that are covered but are not PD in a significant portion of the rest of the world.
  • manifestos and public speeches: manifestos and public speeches, unless specifically released into the PD, are clearly copyrightable, even if the vast majority of the time this copyright is not enforced by the owner. These documents are clearly "unfree".
  • banned works, hate propaganda, Nazi Party documents: addressed above.
  • retag for permanent moral rights: yes, if and where they apply, if they are even to be allowed on this site.
--T. Mazzei 01:28, 20 April 2007 (UTC)
I did not personally select the "Definition of Free Cultural Works"— it is an official policy of the Wikimedia Foundation, of which Wikisource is a project, as laid out at foundation:Resolution:Licensing policy. This policy applies to Wikisource whether we want it to or not, although we can be more restrictive if we wish. Problems with the definition itself should be brought up on the discussion list or with the Wikimedia Board of Trustees.
Could you clarify your position? Consider the relevant Berne Convention clause:
"Independently of the author's economic rights, and even after the transfer of the said rights, the author shall have the right to claim authorship of the work and to object to any distortion, mutilation or other modification of, or other derogatory action in relation to, the said work, which would be prejudicial to his honor or reputation." (BC-6bis)
If I understand correctly, you would like Wikisource to enforce moral rights for all works worldwide, even for users not based in countries with moral right legislation. If so, this would mean either:
  1. requiring attribution for and prohibiting all changes to (including wikilinking, translation, annotations, et cetera) every work on Wikisource, given that requiring author's approval is incompatible with the GFDL (under which all Wikisource content is licensed);
  2. deleting nearly every page on Wikisource and its sister projects, which are not truly free in France and some other countries (where legal restrictions require attribution and author's approval of changes, even where copyright is expired or the author waives such restrictions).
  • Corollary: the GFDL and all copyleft licenses are invalid and unusable.
Moral rights are a legal restriction on all works in some jurisdictions, much like anti-hate propaganda legislation in Canada. If you think it would help, we can add a disclaimer on licenses mentioning that some additional restrictions may apply in certain jurisdictions, and link to a relevant help page. However, your position, if I understand it correctly, is impossible; we cannot have a wiki with such restrictions. —{admin} Pathoschild 04:37:26, 20 April 2007 (UTC)
I've already stated the difference between moral rights and specific legal restrictions like anti-hate propaganda. Since the goal of Wikisource is to be a source for "free texts", not "free ideas", the first applies to this site, while the second does not. My position regarding works covered by moral rights and other restrictions is:
1. if and when only a few jurisdictions are affected, tagging with a disclaimer is appropriate
2. if and when the vast majority of jurisdictions outside the US countries are affected, hosting these documents and then claiming that this site provides only free works to anyone is ridiculous, unless your definition of "anyone" is "Americans". Either change the goal of the site, or remove the works.
As to the possibility that this might be impossible, given the Wiki mandate for "freedom", that very well may be the case (though at this point I don't think so). Pretending certain restrictions don't exist because they are inconvenient doesn't make them go away, it just makes your claims to the "freedom" of the hosted works that contain those restrictions a farce.--T. Mazzei 14:17, 20 April 2007 (UTC)
I disagree with your distinction between "free text" and "free ideas"; the idea therein might be the reason a work is banned, but it is the work itself that is specifically banned (reproduction and distribution prohibited).
I also disagree with you that moral rights are attached to the work, but I see BirgitteSB has started a discussion on Foundation-l; since there are more legally-savvy users therein and since your position apparently means either rethinking or deleting most Wikimedia content, I suggest discussing it further on that list. If you are not subscribed, you can do so from the info page; see "[Foundation-l] Does 'free content' exist in France?". —{admin} Pathoschild 17:19:05, 20 April 2007 (UTC)
re: distinction between "free text" and "free ideas": if you take a "free text" that happens to violate hate speech or libel laws, and modify it to remove the objectionable part, then the relevant authority will no longer have any problem with the work. However, if you take a work that is covered under moral rights, and start modifying it to change the ideas expressed in the text, that is exactly where the trouble begins. Hopefully this helps to demonstrate how and why I make the distinction between the two types of restrictions, and why I consider moral rights bound to the text, while the other restrictions mentioned are not. I recognise that this is more of a logical distinction then a practical distinction in terms of whether or not a text is "free" (which is why I said less objection their inclusion, not no objection). The unaltered original source is definitely not "free" in the jurisdiction in which it is banned. I merely offered it as a (somewhat) defensible "out" for this site, as an "impartial" international organization, in posting documents that are covered under these "unattached" jurisdictional restrictions.--T. Mazzei 03:47, 22 April 2007 (UTC)

Hello, I don't understand what is the problem with moral rights discussed above. According to me, moral rights never make a document unfree. It is a restriction which which does not prevent derivative works (translations, new work inspired from another, etc.), commercial distribution, etc. The perpetual moral rights are attribution and respect. And there is protection against alteration, distortion or mutilation, which is more a restriction against libel than against using the work. To me, it means, for example, that in France, you cannot claim that Victor Hugo's works are your own, and that if you publish a modified version of Victor Hugo's works, you have to mention that it was changed. These restrictions do not make a work unfree. Regards, Yann 18:25, 20 April 2007 (UTC)

Moral rights mean that you cannot create a derivative "which would be prejudicial to [the author's] honour or reputation". This is in conflict with the site definition of free documents which requires you to be free to distribute derivatives "regardless of the intent and purpose of such modifications". So these documents cannot be free, according to official site (and Foundation) policy. As far as practicalities go, if moral rights simply collapse to a prohibition against "libel", then I think they can be ignored. However I am fairly certain "the author" (or perhaps I should say "the author's lawyer") can come up with many instances where "prejudicial to his honour or reputation" falls outside of simple libel. Another factor is that I understand that in some (many?) jurisdictions, it is basically the author that determines what does or does not prejudice his honour, not an objective 3rd party.--T. Mazzei 19:26, 20 April 2007 (UTC)
@Yann: I don't think anyone here is saying moral rights should make a work unfree. However I believe moral rights do conflict with the specific definition of free content adopted by WMF. My position is that such a definition is unworkable, not that all french works are unfree :) If you have been following foundation-l, Erik (who is one of the authors of the defintion) is considering amending the WMF policy to rectify the problem.--BirgitteSB 00:58, 21 April 2007 (UTC)

A request for an English version of the Spring and Autum Annals

These are part of the traditional Confucian Classics, the Spring and Autumn Annals currently appear to not exist in translation. The Chinese version of Wikipedia already has the entire text on its site. Those authors able to read the original Chinese suggest this is a significant resource for those wishing to study this period. I would like to request someone, or more likely a group of bilingual members, consider the possibility of a long-term project to create the first English translation of this work. I appreciate this would be a large project, but know many would greatly benefit from such a translation. Thanks. 15:34, 2 April 2007 (UTC)


Can I make my book available on Wikisource?

I am hoping to have published a book on the history of a well known (in England) rugby football club.

The book will have an ISBN and I will be the copyright holder.

As it will be published in a short run I would like to make it available on Wikisource once all copies have been sold.

Would this be appropriate? unsigned comment by (talk) .

Thank you for considering to contribute your work to Wikisource. What Wikisource includes is a great place to get started on this topic. In a nutshell:
  1. You must agree to release your work under the terms of the GFDL or a compatible licence. In particular, you must have the power to do so, i.e. you assure us that you, not your publisher or anyone else, are the copyright holder.
  2. The work must have undergone an editing process, peer review or similar. Having your book published in the usual way is fine, as long as your publisher does not belong to the vanity press. Note that if your work does not meet this criterion, it may still be eligible for publication through Wikibooks.
If you still have questions, feel free to ask them here.--GrafZahl 10:18, 12 February 2007 (UTC)

Automated upload of Catholic Encyclopedia

I could be able to mass-upload every article of with basic automatic formatting (such as header and footer) and index pages, can you please say me if it is acceptable? If it is so, i will need some help to assure i will not upload wrongly formatted pages... --Riccardo (better on it.wikipedia) 11:23, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

Hello Riccardo. A title page has already been created at Catholic Encyclopedia, 1913, though it is highly incomplete. Any contributions you can make towards completing it are welcome, although please test a few pages before mass-uploading; we've had problems before with users uploading hundreds of badly-formatted pages. :) —{admin} Pathoschild 18:29:02, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

Ok, i will prepare a small amount of test pages in a few days. --Riccardo (better on it.wikipedia) 18:41, 24 February 2007 (UTC)

permission to use bot

I ask for permission to use a bot * for upload Catholic Encyclopedia, 1913 articles, I will use pywikipedia with this file (26 Mb) (here a sample), then i will need some passes to correct page header. I've rebuilt an index. --Riccardo (better on it.wikipedia) 22:24, 25 February 2007 (UTC)

Hello Riccardo. I have a few questions and comments:
  • I assume you will backlink to an index for navigation, which would be easy with regex and make sense in this case. However, existing pages use an article-to-article navigation (see example). Will you replace that system on current pages, and wouldn't it be easier and quicker to add the navigation directly to your file using a regex editor?
  • The index you've created is incorrect; every article should be named "Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)/Article title", not "Article title", which is easily corrected. (I'll move the current pages to the parenthetical standard before you start.)
  • Be careful with special characters; you cannot work from a normal text file, as that replaces Unicode with nonsense like "ò". Make sure your source and files are saved with a Unicode-compatible encoding (with Notepad: File >> Save as >> Encoding: Unicode). For example, search your test for "canonry at Münster".
Thank you for your interest in contributing; a careful standards-conformant upload bot would be very welcome. :) —{admin} Pathoschild 08:35:16, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

I assure you that text index and example file are correct utf-8, but browsers (at least firefox) renders it as ascii; ehm... i forgot to add Catholic Encyclopedia (1913) to the index, and if convention is (date) ant not the current , date i must also change articles. Regarding navigation index in headers... yes, it will be better to add links before upload... i will try. Thank you for your help --Riccardo (better on it.wikipedia) 09:36, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

Here there are about 10000 pages almost ready (there are some duplicates, but with the same page name, so it shouldn't matter). I could upload them with a slowed-down unflagged bot of mine, or make a bot request, or wait some days until i will have permission --Riccardo (better on it.wikipedia) 21:12, 27 February 2007 (UTC) Yes, i'm still correcting remaining errors :-P --Riccardo (better on it.wikipedia) 21:13, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

I would suggest running your bot slowly to create ten or so pages, then pausing it for feedback. After that you could run it a little more, perhaps another thirty pages or so, and if there are no problems you could request a bot flag and run it faster. :) —{admin} Pathoschild 01:01:06, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

Test runs

Ok, i've uploaded some pages for now, here is up-to-date source (someone passing by could be taken by an irrefrenable will to check text, why not? :) ); ehm... considering that there are 11255 articles I request a bot flag, with a page each 10 seconds (approx a right-speed bot) I will need 31 hours --Riccardo (better on it.wikipedia) 18:11, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

Hello. I think it's a little early to grant a bot flag; as the bot policy explains, new bots should perform a few test runs to work out any glitches first. I have a few suggestions about your last test run:
  • I've normalized the Catholic Encyclopedia header template, but I would suggest using the {{header2}} template directly. It automatically adjusts for empty parameters, so this is ideal for bot creation. Using the standard header template is preferable over a specialized template since it makes it easier for bots to parse pages; the specialized templates should generally only be used for works in progress, and replaced with the standard header (usually by substituting) when the work is complete. I would suggest this usage, leaving the previous and next lines blank where necessary:
 | title    = [[../]]
 | author   = |author_override = [[Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)#Editors|multiple editors]]
 | section  = {{SUBPAGENAME}}
 | previous = [[../previous|previous]]
 | next     = [[../next|next]]
 | notes    = 
  • An advanced regex bot like Pathosbot will eventually need to go through the pages and replace "see SOMETHING" with "see [[../Something|SOMETHING]]", and remove bot comments like <!-- title:'''Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)/Aachen''' -->.
Great work so far. :) —{admin} Pathoschild 20:45:18, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
Ok, i will change header, regarding title line... i simply forgot to use -notitle option, ehm --Riccardo (better on it.wikipedia) 21:43, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
I added some tenth of pages, will continue tomorrow --Riccardo (better on it.wikipedia) 17:30, 1 March 2007 (UTC)
That looks very good. I just made two minor mistakes above ("override_author" and subst:). Pathosbot is fixing current pages.
 | title    = [[../]]
 | author   = |override_author = by [[Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)#Editors|multiple editors]]
 | section  = {{subst:SUBPAGENAME}}
 | previous = [[../previous|previous]]
 | next     = [[../next|next]]
 | notes    = 
{admin} Pathoschild 20:48:24, 01 March 2007 (UTC)

Bot flag

  • I support granting a bot flag to Riccardobot. Riccardobot has successfully uploaded a number of pages now, and Riccardo has shown that he is polite and willing to correct mistakes. —{admin} Pathoschild 01:33:42, 04 March 2007 (UTC)
  • Support. Looks good.--GrafZahl 10:43, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
  • Support where this kind of initiative can work, we should not put obstacles in its way. Bravo Riccardo! Physchim62 14:04, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
  • Support Outstanding! ++Lar: t/c 17:06, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
    thank you, I will soon speed up page uploading, i hope to upload every volume early --Riccardo (better on it.wikipedia) 16:05, 6 March 2007 (UTC)


Total noob question: Do contributions have to be in Wikitext form? I have PDFs of 1800s New York Times articles to contribute, but re-typing all of them would be laborious and error-prone, as well as lose the images until I separate them and put them in commons. 23:38, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

Yes, although the PDFs are welcome alongside them as long as they are (or will be) available in wikiML format. —{admin} Pathoschild 01:02:53, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

Hey I think that the categories regarding era should be more along the lines of ancient authors, medieval, Rennaissance, Neoclassic, Romantic, Modern, Postmodern surely you can't jump from Rennaissance to "Early-Modern" thats too vague a term.

Open Source Material

Should Wikisource be considered just a repository for open source text? Can other public domain items be included, such as sheet music, etc. Actually, the reason why I brought it up is because there is really no real way to find anything that is in public domain besides Googling it and hoping something useful pops up. Just a thought. Thanks, John G. 23:58, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

The March of the Volunteers has a sheet music. Even though upoading files like images here is possible, please visit Wikisource:Image use guidelines and consider using Wikimedia Commons. Googling can find many images, but most are copyrighted.--Jusjih 18:21, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
I was thinking more PDF format, much easier (doesn't break copyright). Also, Wikimedia Commons has some rudimentary material such as examples of notation, etc. but does not have much in the way of actual playable printable music. Or should this be an idea for a new "music" wiki? John G. 01:40, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
PDFs are usually discouraged here. These files have issues with being able to be viewed in some browsers (I know my FireFox will only display them half of the time) and aren't easily integrated into article pages. A preferred alternative would be to take screen captures of each page and upload the individual files to Commons. That way we have more control over how the pages are displayed and we don't require people to actually have to download the PDF (which could be fairly large in filesize, as well).—Zhaladshar (Talk) 03:46, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
The page editor allows for a bunch of mathematical symbols- could we possibly get musical notation included as a typable format? it would be time consuming to submit, but at least it would display directly on the page without compatibility issues. My main problem with doing screen captures and sticking them together is with both the large file size and the lack of editability. It seems rather cumbersome to have to screen capture each page, post it to commons, and finally link it to the respective article. Still, if we were to include sheet music it might be the only choice... John G. 05:41, 7 February 2007 (UTC)
You might be interested in the International Music Score Library Project, They are a wiki that hosts PDFs of public domain sheet music.-- 20:53, 25 February 2007 (UTC)

Adding content

William Topaz McGonagall

I'd like to add some poetry by William Topaz McGonagall, which is surely out of copyright, but I don't have access to any books containing the poems that are themselves out of copyright. I know that project gutenberg in particular won't accept out-of-copyright works from in-copyright sources (because there may be copyrighted modifications made without notice, I think). What about Wikisource? Is it acceptable to add these out-of-copyright poems from in-copyright collections, or would I need to find an older book? --Sopoforic 00:20, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

In general, if the in-copyright anthology seems to be presenting the original work (not "An updated version of..." or "...with annotations" or " modern-English", then I'd say it's well within the realm of assuming that they themselves are publishing the poem as it was written by McGonagall. If an older copy of the poem surfaces one day, and disagrees with our current text, we'll of course use the older source - but barring that event, I would welcome you to create Author:William Topaz McGonagall and add his works. Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 13:56, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Erm, I see it already exists...but you get my drift. Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 13:57, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Agree with Sherurcij. The poems themselves are out of copyright since 1953, even though the publishers of the book could have copyright on an introduction or indeed on the "typographical arrangement" (i.e. the appearance of its pages). You are free, welcome, and even positively invited to upload the poems to Wikisource! Physchim62 17:08, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Thanks to both of you. I have one further query. In mathematics, there's a problem commonly attributed to Archimedes. In 1773, a Greek manuscript was found with the problem stated in 22 couplets. There is some dispute among scholars regarding whether the poem (or even the problem) was indeed written by Archimedes. I'm writing an article for enwiki on the problem, and it was suggested that I should put the original poem here and include the problem in prose in the article I'm writing. So, the question is: ought I to create Author:Archimedes and add the poem? Should I mention that the authorship is disputed? How should I credit the translator? Thanks in advance for your assistance. --Sopoforic 23:51, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

You can credit the translator in the 'notes' parameter of the {{header}} template. If the translator died less than 100 years ago, you'll need to use {{translation license}}. Yes, you can create Author:Archimedes and note that the authorship is disputed. —{admin} Pathoschild 04:25:09, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

Obituary notice published in magazine

I am wondering whether an Obituary notice of Author:W.H.R.Rivers, by w:Frederic_Bartlett (d. 1969) can be stored on Wikisource. It was published in w:The Eagle (magazine) in 1922 (w:W. H. R. Rivers# note-4 has more citation data). So {{PD-1923}} could apply, unless the copyright was transferred to the magazine. OCLC indicates that the magazine is still published annually, but I've not found much information about the current magazine. What I have found is that in 1922 it was published by w:W. Metcalfe and Son, which is now defunct as best I can tell. John Vandenberg 12:53, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

I dislike using {{PD-1923}} for things published outside the US but others may not have a problem with it.--BirgitteSB 13:18, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

Following up on that, it appears that in the UK, "Under the 1911 Act, such assignments reverted to the author's estate 25 years after the death of the author. However, that rule only applies to works made before 1 June 1957." If that applies here, the copyright is held by the Bartlett estate, and I could approach them. John Vandenberg 10:16, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

Works published not published in the United States before 01 January 1923 are not in the public domain under the 1923 criteria. —{admin} Pathoschild 04:48:54, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Anonymous poem with a likely author

Im trying to work out what to do with a poem on W. H. R. Rivers called Anthropological Thoughts. The text before the poem indicates that it is probable that it was written w:Charles Elliot Fox (d. 1974)[2], which would put it out of wikisource reach. But, it was written anonymous; does anyone what bearing that has on the copyright status of the poem ? John Vandenberg 12:09, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

Hello John Vandenberg. Texts published anonymously seem to be copyrighted for the shorter of 95 years after the date of first publication or 120 years from the date of creation, unless it was in the public domain as of 01 January 1978 (17USC302(c)). —{admin} Pathoschild 04:32:00, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
Thanks; if it had slipped into the PD it would have done so before 1978, so I am looking into whether it was legally published in the US to see whether {{PD-US-no-notice}} applies. John Vandenberg 03:06, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

commons:Category:Jan Kleczyński - Chopin's Greater Works


I scanned book "Chopin's Greater Works" by Jan Kleczyński, translated by Natalja Janotha. It avaliable on Commons as set of PNGs. May be somebody will be interested in making OCR/proofreading. Thank you. --commons:User:EugeneZelenko 16:17, 9 February 2007 (UTC)

How to mark that pictures are not included

I added The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, Part One: South Side R.R. of L.I. and The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, Part Two: The Flushing, North Shore & Central Railroad. Both of these include several pages of images, but their copyright status is not clear. (This is a common problem with railroad books: the photos are from "collection of so-and-so" but do not have any copyright information.) Should I note somewhere that the images are not included? --NE2 10:02, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

Any such editorial notes can be placed in the {{header}} notes. —{admin} Pathoschild 01:41, 13 February 2007 (UTC)
You could also add HTML notes at the specific point where the image would have appeared... Physchim62 17:14, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

Why are these so freely editable?

What's stopping me from adding the words 'is not' to a couple of the lines in something like Wittgenstein's Tractatus and really confusing people? Even if the change gets spotted quickly, why risk having some poor sod come to the site and get outright wrong information? unsigned comment by (talk) 14:43, 12 February 2007.

Because otherwise no new works could be added. --Benn Newman (AMDG) 14:55, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
It should also be noted that the protection policy allows locking of pages with a text quality of 75% or higher.--GrafZahl 16:00, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
So why is Tractatus not locked? unsigned comment by (talk) 23:19, 12 February 2007.
Because the text quality is currently 25% (not proofread). —{admin} Pathoschild 01:35, 13 February 2007 (UTC)
People will be confused enough by the original. —Αναρχία 08:39, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

Greek Alphabet

I copied T.S. Eliot's poem Mr. Eliot's Sunday Morning Service from project Gutenberg, but the poem contains some Greek letters. The Gutenberg version just reads "insert greek letters here". How do I put the greek into wikisource? -Samael775 15:55, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

Well, if you know what the Greek letters are, then on the bottom of the screen, there is a drop-down menu box called "Select." Click it and select the "Greek" option, and you'll get the entire Greek alphabet (both upper and lower case). If you aren't sure what the Greek is, some research (either online or referencing a paper copy) will be required.—Zhaladshar (Talk) 18:19, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

Is a list of Nepal postal codes appropriate here?

Some editor at Wikipedia has typed in Wikipedia:List of postal codes in Nepal. I checked, and it's very difficult to find this on the web -- perhaps impossible unless your computer is set to whatever alphabet they use in Nepal. The article doesn't fit in Wikipedia and there's a deletion discussion going on now. Would Wikisource be a proper spot for it? If you allow it in, you'll likely be getting others. If it were easy to find on the Web, I'd just want to delete it, but my heart goes out to all those letter writers and package senders distraught over not having the proper Nepalese postal code on their mail to Nepal. Can we not assist these needy people. I remind you that it's the middle of winter and Nepalese mail carriers must now be trudging through the Himalayan snow drifts, risking their very lives weighed down with misdirected mail. Noroton 21:06, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

No, Wikisource does not host reference data except as part of a published work. It might be acceptable on Wikibooks, though. —{admin} Pathoschild 21:02:03, 20 February 2007 (UTC)
Thanks much! I'll ask there. 23:17, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
The deletion ended with them being kept. 08:53, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

The New Illustrated Universal Reference Book


Belive this to be out of copyright given the front-peice givien, but would appreciate one of the 'experts' here taking a look. If it needs to go, speedy it ASAP. ShakespeareFan00 13:03, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

It is a corporate work published in UK in 1933. Yann 19:08, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
Nuked by admin on request, following reading of various polices here, and apparent shaky copyright status. ShakespeareFan00 23:40, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

More Fun & Games around the Copyright Table

This Italian tribunal quotes a CIA recording of Abu Omar's conversations - so who owns the copyright? CIA works of course fall under Public Domain - but does Omar own his own speech if he had no intentions of "tangible-izing" it? Just curious what grey area this falls under. Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 04:41, 1 March 2007 (UTC)

The CIA work itself is in the public domain, but that does not affect the copyright status of any quotations. If Omar's speech is copyrighted, the quotations in the otherwise public-domain CIA work are fair use. I think that the quotations are not copyrighted, since there is no copyrighted tangible form, but you should get professional advice on that before you upload it. —{admin} Pathoschild 04:52:31, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Category completeness

What is the policy for referencing documents located outside the Wikisource? I mean the idea not the syntax. For example, there are a lot of political treaties between countries. Some of them are on the Web, some not. Do we have to keep all treaties in the Wikisource for the country X, or can we store unpublished ones and just link others in the appropriate category? Or do I have to create special page in the Wikipedia (for example "All treaties of country X") and update it manually? It would be a mix of links to the documents in Wikisource and the Web. Barons

Hello Barons. All content links should point to Wikisource, although it is acceptable to have out-of-the-way footnotes or extra links linking to off-site sources until we add them ourselves (as is done on Author:Henry Fielding). I'm not sure what you mean with your other questions. —{admin} Pathoschild 04:59:52, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Halsbury's Laws of England

Halsburys was published in 1907 which should mean it can be used freely. I have a complete set but, at 31 large volumes, it is hard to know how it might be included here. I would say that as a source of law in systems based on British common law, it is a more significant source than the Britannica is in its field. Any suggestions? --KenWalker 23:18, 10 February 2007 (UTC)

I am not sure what you are asking for. That work would certianly be a welcome addition to the project.--BirgitteSB 14:29, 20 February 2007 (UTC)
Agree with Birgitte, I think it would be wonderful to have even a few articles from the 1907 Halsbury's, let alone the whole work. However, I am not aware of any digitized sources at the moment, so I can do anything practical to help :( Physchim62 17:18, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
What I want is to let people here know that I have the volumes available. I am asking for advice about how I might be able to put the printed volumes I have to use here. What is the process?--KenWalker 15:59, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
If you have a scanner you can scan them and use an OCR software to convert them to text, or just upload the images of the pages to "Commons". Alternately, you can also copy them by hand. There may be other options, so wait around and see what others say for a little while. 08:48, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Downloading content

Whether it is possible to download contents from the website in a limited way?

please reply to — [Removed Email address: We don't Email answers 08:50, 20 March 2007 (UTC)]

You want to download individual books? That's not possible at the moment, although we may have print editions of featured texts in the future. Right now you would need to download the text of individual chapters. —{admin} Pathoschild 21:43:12, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Paragraph breaks

It seems that most chapters of The Story of My Experiments with Truth have paragraph breaks after each line. The problem is that there's only one paragraph break after reak paragraphs, so that the text just flows. Some other chapters contain no paragraph breaks at all, which is even worse.

I started adding them manually, but I'm wondering if there isn't a better way to do that. I would like to do this sooner rather than later since I'm wikifying chapters now. It may be easier to just replace the texts, in which case there's no point in wikifying them now. Any solutions to this problem? SebastianHelm 08:54, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

If I understand you correctly you're trying to increase whitespace inbetween paragraphs? In that case see Vfd, templates imported from Wikipedia , and read the defense section on I, I2, I5 etc. I2 will do that for you in a flash, and allow you to indent the leading sentence as well if you like. // FrankB 11:40, 20 February 2007 (UTC)
The problem is that the text has no paragraph breaks (empty lines). The I-templates will only insert line breaks, so they are not useful in this case (and I think they are deprecated at Wikisource). And inserting templates is not less work than inserting paragraph breaks. If there is some way to automatically determine where new paragraphs start it may be possible to use a bot to insert the paragraph breaks. /EnDumEn 13:01, 20 February 2007 (UTC)+

Besides making a bot request I do know of a temporary fix which should be acceptable since that is such a large project. You could simply enclose the page in <poem> </poem> as a quick fix for now. Then as you through doing the wikify work add the extra space manually adn delete the poem syntax.--BirgitteSB 14:55, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for your replies, and thanks about the poem tag, I wasn't aware of that and will use it where appropriate.

At this time, I'm thinking if it isn't easier to do it all over. I checked chapter XXII's history, and I don't see a reason against it. I wonder where this text has been taken from in the first place. There are other sites out there that contain the text without our problem:

home page sample chapter formatting copyright [3] contains inline footnotes Etext Conversion Project (ECP) only 5 chapters [4] shows italics "© 2001-06 Shubhayan Mukherjee", but it seems to be identical with Beacon paperback edition [5] just as bad as ours - is this our source? [6] nicely formatted, with footnotes [7]

Clearly, the last one is the best. Maybe I should ask the editor, Fran Pritchett, if it's OK to copy it. SebastianHelm 17:40, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

One additional question: If I take Fran Pritchett's version, can she then use that for her page? Maybe she'd like to have a version with links to Wikipedia. It obviously wouldn't make sense in that case if she had to add something like "taken from Wikisource". SebastianHelm 18:44, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

Hello. The text would need to licensed compatibly with the Copyright policy's free content definition, allowing the text to be freely viewed, used, distributed, modified, and exploited by anyone, in any form, and for any purpose (including commercial exploitation) without exception and without limitation (except attribution and possibly transmission of freedoms).
It would be necessary to cite Wikisource if including the headers, links, annotations, and other creative improvements, since these are (poorly) licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. If you explicitly license your edits differently (such as placing them in the public domain) and nobody else contributes to the text, she won't need to cite Wikisource. —{admin} Pathoschild 22:46:30, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
On a related note, is not the source for our text; We are their source. :) —{admin} Pathoschild 22:50:28, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

The War of the Worlds

Minor point, but according to Guternburg this work isn't Public Domain (at least not in the EU) until 2016 at the earliest..

H.G Wells Died in 1946 - Meaning that the 50 year copyright (Which would have existed at that time in the UK would not have expired until 1996) Which is after copyright terms were extended to 70 years.

Thusly as far as the UK is concerned (and possibly the EU as well) NONE of H.G Wells works are yet in the Public Domain.

There is also the issue of 'derived' versions given the recent film adaptations. ShakespeareFan00 16:19, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

The simple answer is, "We don't care about the UK, if it's PD in the States, we put it up" - though the less-simple truth is that we're not consistent about that. We waver between "PD in the States" and "respecting laws of major English-speaking countries" and "respecting laws of all countries", the fact is, copyright law is inconsistent with itself, and there's not a prayer of finding something legal in every country under every eventuality. Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 17:08, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Spoken works and LibriVox

On the mailing list, Erik Möller suggested that the Wikisources' collection of spoken works may be expanded by free material from LibriVox and that he's going to write a bot to automate the upload to commons, provided that there are sufficient volunteers to add links to the media files and keep a spoken work index up to date. My thoughts about this:

  • The LibriVox files could potentially make a great addition to Wikisource.
  • We don't seem to have a spoken work index besides the category page which is getting quite full, with all subchapters for a single work being listed. As Erik pointed out, our German sister project already has an index page with information for listeners and speakers, which I'd be willing to translate.
  • Nevertheless, before a spoken work is advertised as complete/reliable, it should go through a quality control process, which, given that the audio files come from an external source, would incorporate special scrutiny that the spoken works are actually the same versions as their written equivalents on Wikisource. In this light, a check/upload bot might not actually be necessary, even unwanted sometimes.

What do you think?--GrafZahl 22:15, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

My thoughts are mainly on your last point. LibriVox usually links to the Gutenberg version that they read. So, if our version is different than the one they read, we can easily switch to the other version. Although, I don't particularly see this as an issue if the audio version and our text version don't match, as most people probably won't read the text along with listening to the audio (although, I do understand your point). Also, by doing this, we might be able to get a link exchange going with LibriVox, too: we host their works, give them full credit, link to their page (on the Commons file page), and they link to us. I think it would help both of us in the long haul.
I've already e-mail Erik about being willing to add links and help with the Index, although he has yet to reply back.—Zhaladshar (Talk) 19:26, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
Having read your reply, I've thought about it again and now I believe my points of critique are not so relevant after all. Of course, we should inform our users that the contents may not match perfectly, but after all we're republishing previously published material, so the differences should never be very big, and if they are, it probably warrants hosting an alternate version of a text anyway. All my remaining concerns become moot then. So, let's try this experiment. My offer of copying the structure of the German spoken works directory stands, as for the rest, I'll have to see how much time I've left.--GrafZahl (talk) 10:58, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
Sounds good to me. :) I can't do much of the translation, but I can help organize much of the audio works (seeing as I've added so many of the ones we have) if need be.—Zhaladshar (Talk) 20:15, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
I've placed a translation at Wikisource:Spoken works. Now we need to streamline it (see my comments on the talk page), possibly split it into a useful guideline and an index. Even if Erik should decide not to write his bot, it's useful to have these pages.--GrafZahl (talk) 23:20, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Formating- in relation to The Elements of Euclid.


In copying across text from an edition of 'The Elements of Euclid' (now in the public domain) I have attempted to keep the original formatting.

See The Elements of Euclid/Book I/Proposition_1

However, it would be clearer (and more useful if I could reformat this slightly, so that wiki cross refs within the text could be added.

What is Wikisource policy on this?

Should I format as the original text, or re-format for clarity and cross-ref?

The material in the work could however be adapted for WikiBooks if wiki-link cross referencing can't be applied to the work on here.

ShakespeareFan00 23:04, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Some users believe in maintaining the accuracy of the formatting, others welcome small "tweaks" as long as the text integrity is preserved. Personally I'm in the latter camp, but at the end of the day - "Do as you will". I mean, the "original format" didn't include wikilinks to the relevant Wikipedia article of who Benjamin Franklin was referring to when he said "learned gentlemen like Trotter" either...but it's helpful and it doesn't compromise the text, so it's a good thing :) Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 17:05, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

Public domain materials with limited fair use items

I would like to request comments for what we should do when a public domain text contains limited fair use items, such as quoting others' copyrighted texts in limited amount and using others' copyrighted images incidental to the text. Our copyright policy forbids claiming fair use for a whole article, but I am not fully sure of what we should do with public domain materials with limited fair use items, so I would like to ask.--Jusjih 17:34, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

I personally am strongly in favour of allowing them, since it emasculates the PD text to "cut out" parts that are only "fair use" by the original author. Is War and Peace not Public Domain because it quotes from a version of the Bible under eternal copyright? Such a claim would be preposterous - and yet I know there are some who don't agree with me. A recent example might be the document removed from Zodiac Killer letters because one of his letters consisted of a piece torn off a w:Rand & McNally map of the city or something. It clearly fits every definition of fair use, since we weren't using it to illustrate what the city of San Fransisco looks like, merely as a historical scrap of paper included in one of the Zodiac's letters...we are legally well within our rights to host similar "limited fair use items", so it just comes down to a matter of writing it into the copyright policy, as you say. Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 18:11, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
I am just as strongly against allowing them. The Copyright policy prohibits fair use entirely, not only of entire works. A public domain text that contains fair use has the same restrictions as a fully copyrighted work, particularly since we explicitly allow commercial use and fair-use-incompatible rights in our end-user licensing. (Note that War and Peace is in the United States public domain because the United States does not recognize perpetual copyright.) —{admin} Pathoschild 03:07:18, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
Then let's look at the 9/11 Commission, which is PD and we do host - despite the fact we deleted the Flight 93 Cockpit Recorder and similar documents under (slightly dubious) claims they were protected by copyright. Are you going to remove all the quotes from non-PD works from the Commission's report? That might slightly emasculate the work. Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 12:43, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
I initiated this question after I came across with my fellow admin in Chinese Wikisource concerning whether the pictures of 21 student leaders wanted by Red China after Tiananmen Square protests of 1989 could be used together with zh:北京市公安局搜捕“高自联”在逃分子通缉令 (official arrest notice issued on 13 June 1989 by Beijing Public Security Bureau with the text qualifying for Template:PD-CN). In case wanted criminals' pictures are supposely copyrighted (sometimes with unknown authors), incidental official use may still qualifies as fair use. As Chinese Wikisource has very limited active users with just four admins, discussing this issues there is too hard. Likewise, when I added Transcript of the closed trial of Nicolae and Elena Ceausescu, the source website identifies it as a US Governmental translation. Sections in italic type are from Austrian television comentary, which is supposedly copyrightable and incidentally included as fair use. Please see also m:Do fair use images violate the GFDL?--Jusjih 16:36, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
We should delete works with fair use content and wait for their copyright to expire, much as we must do for other copyrighted literature. A work cannot be almost compatible with the GNU Free Documentation License; the copyrighted content must be removed, and we do not collect incomplete works. Some points regarding previous discussion on Meta:
  • The reasoning outlined at "m:Do fair use images violate the GFDL?" is not applicable to Wikisource, where we are trying to build a free content library: "An image, when legitimately used under fair use doctrine, can be treated similar to public domain, and hence can be relicensed under GFDL. If further usage and distribution lead to the loss of fair use status of the image, default copyright law applies and the image and so the article cannot be distributed at all." Since our license allows use in circumstances where fair use is not applicable, the content does violate the GNU free documentation license.
  • "m:Permission grant extent" outlines the problems associated with a "partial grant". Note that such a partial grant is even more problematic on Wikisource, where the problematic content is not separate from the free content.
The 9/11 Commission Report is a copyright violation if it contains copyrighted material, particularly since we explicitly state that it is in the public domain. If this statement is incorrect, it should be removed immediately. —{admin} Pathoschild 21:29:00, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
We're not all quite so hawkish on deleting things just because they don't meet a very narrow interpretation of "Free" - I imagine a better solution might be to create a template warning readers "While the bulk of this work is in the public domain, the original authors did incorporate some work which we cannot guarantee is equally public domain" or such, which we would then tag onto the appropriate texts. There is no reason to emasculate and lessen our great (and perfectly legal) resource, when we could simply be informing readers who can then make the choices themselves. Also, as a personal note, you might try phrasing your opinions less as "word of God", and more as an equal participating in a debate - "This is X and must be Y" only serves to increase the sense of antagonism faced by other users, who then adopt a "challenging authority" attitude, and tensions escalate. Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 21:40, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
I apologize if I seemed authoritative, which was not my intention. My words are my own interpretation of the Copyright policy and the Wikimedia Foundation's mission. :) —{admin} Pathoschild 02:10:02, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Limited fair use items in public domain materials do not necessarily violate the Foundation's mission, but as English and Chinese Wikipedias ask for fair use rationales for newer uploads, I consider that we cannot accept uploads of fair use images here unless very good rationales can be provided to explain why these items are reasonably fair when used toghther with public domain materials. This will require a new policy. I am still waiting for a consensus here, namely the fourth opinion, before reporting this discussion to Chinese Wikisource for reference.--Jusjih 17:46, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Fair use does violate the Foundation's mission. All content, according to the Foundation licensing policy, must be available under a free content license as defined by the Definition of Free Cultural Works. This definition states that free content can be freely viewed, used, distributed, modified, and exploited by anyone, in any form, and for any purpose (including commercial exploitation) without exception and without limitation (with some very limited exceptions such as attribution). The en-Wikisource copyright policy was recently rewritten based on this definition.
However, fair use content cannot be exploited with any such freedom. It can be viewed while on Wikisource, and maybe used in a non-commercial, educational context in the United States. It usually cannot be used in a commercial context, and usually cannot be distributed, modified, and exploited. Sometimes it can. That depends on how good your lawyers are, which is not how I define 'free'.
The Foundation's licensing policy allows the development of an Exemption Doctrine Policy for fair use, which allows fair use despite the fact that it otherwise violates the licensing policy and our mission. However, it is my sincere opinion that allowing fair use on a Wikisource project does far more harm than good. —{admin} Pathoschild 01:42:42, 01 April 2007 (UTC)

Periodicals and subpages

I noticed that many articles published in magazines or newspapers are subpages to their periodicals, not independant source texts, such as National Geographic Magazine/Volume 31/Number 3/What Great Britain is Doing, The International Magazine/Volume 1/Issue 1/International Weekly Miscellany/Martin Farquhar Tupper, The North American Review/Volume 171/Issue 526/The Empire of the Dead, The New York Times/Sporting Intelligence, Factsheet Five/Issue 25/Turning Over New Leaves of Grass, etc. I think that these articles should be independant pages, not subpages. The subpages of journals or magazines should only include table of contents and provide links to independant source texts, just like the style of United States Reports. I am not sure whether this rule should also be applied to the articles in an encyclopedia, another form of collective works. It seems that they can be subpages to the relevant encyclopedia. Anyway, I hope the community can provide clear guidelines on these issues in Wikisource:Style guide.--Neo-Jay 04:51, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

New pages should only be created for stand-alone works such as poems. Whether a particular article in a periodical stands alone depends on whether it is a separate work that was first published in the periodical, or a work specifically intended to be published therein. In cases where there are many articles and only some are stand-alone, it is far easier, better organized, and more legible to include all articles as subpages with redirects as appropriate. This achieves the same effect as a page would while organizing it as part of the periodical.
Articles in an encyclopedia are intrinsically part of the encyclopedia, not separate works, and should always be on subpages. —{admin} Pathoschild 06:12:50, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Thank you for your reply. But how can we distinguish between a separate work that was first published in the periodical and a work specifically intended to be published therein, for example, the articles I listed above? And how do we know only some of many articles are stand-alone? I think that most, if not all, papers and articles published in academic journals (such as Nature and Harvard Law Review) are stand-alone. And see the table in the bottom of Wikisource:Collective works. Now 14 articles are subpages and 24 independent. Should we include all of them as subpages? --Neo-Jay 07:43, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
A stand-alone work could be removed entirely from the context of the collection and not lose any meaning or comprehension. A good example of a stand-alone work is Siegfried Sassoon's 1918 poem "Dreamers", whose association with the collection Counter-Attack and Other Poems is not relevant to the content. A work that is not stand-alone gains meaning in the context of the collection. An example of this is Mark Lemon's 1841 essay The moral of Punch, which does gain meaning as part of Punch magazine. A good rule of thumb is to ask whether the reader would lose anything if we removed all references to the collection. If not, the work is stand-alone. If so, the work is not.
My comment above ("In cases where there are many articles and only some are stand-alone, it is far easier, better organized, and more legible to include all articles as subpages with redirects as appropriate.") related to articles within a collection, not all articles on Wikisource. I meant that if most articles in Punch magazine are not stand-alone, for example, it is easier and better organized to organize the entire magazine with subpages and redirects than have some subpages and some parent pages. —{admin} Pathoschild 22:10:16, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Many thanks, Pathoschild. But sorry, I am not sure whether this rule of thumb is clear enough to guide us. Does it mean that we must make judgment article by article? Or does it provide a general rule that all articles within a collection should be subpages? Does it also apply to academic journals like Nature and Harvard Law Review? Or does it only apply to newspapers and non-academic magazines? But even in a newspaper, it is not clear whether only some of many articles are stand-alone. In the table at the bottom of Wikisource:Collective works, now 24 out of 38 articles are not subpages. What's their status according to the rule of thumb? Another example is "Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus". Does it lose anything if we remove all references to the collection? If so, do we need to put it as a subpage of New York Sun, or simply give a note that this editorial was firstly published in that newspaper (just like what we do currently)? Thank you for your consideration. --Neo-Jay 23:15, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

This is not really an issue. If you feel an article is recognizable as stand-alone, input it as a stand-alone with the actual text (not the header) surrounded by <includeonly></includeonly> Then if we happen to have the full collection (or nearly do) transclude the article to the proper place in the collection with proper header for the collection. But don't make a collection page when we only have one article. Just use common sense.--BirgitteSB 23:31, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Thanks. My real question is whether a subpage like National Geographic Magazine/Volume 31/Number 3/What Great Britain is Doing should be moved to a stand-along page like What Great Britain is Doing. A subpage of a newspapaer or magazine is better formed as a page containing the table of contents that are linked to independent articles, or a page with original version of the newspaper section or magazine page like Punch/Volume 1/Issue 1. I think that your solution is good. We can keep the articles in magazines and newspapers stand-alone and use <includeonly></includeonly> and transclusion to make the subpages of the newspaper or magazine show the content of relevant stand-alone pages. This can make it easier to modify the pages (we only need to modify the relevant stand-along pages). And I don't think that we should not make a collection page when we only have several articles. At least we can provide the table of contents of the periodical and wait for other editors to change the red links to blue. --Neo-Jay 00:03, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
I'm increasingly of the opinion that subpages with redirects are ideal for such cases, since they simplify context and organization. A redirect from What Great Britain is Doing to National Geographic Magazine/Volume 31/Number 3/What Great Britain is Doing would confer all the benefits of a top page (ease of linking, search results, et cetera) to the subpage. —{admin} Pathoschild 19:37:27, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
Thanks. But I don't think that it is ideal. To clarify the context, we can also put the information about article' first publication into the notes section in Header. This is a question about what pages should be stand-alone. Those articles first published in a periodical can be reprinted separately by other sources. They are independent works like poems. I have kept asking you some questions and have not received your answers. Do you think that the articles published in academic journals are stand-alone or not? Do you think that your rule of thumb applies to all articles in all newspapers, all magazines, all academic journals, etc? If not, how to distinguish them? Only poems deserve to be stand-alone? Why? What's the logic?
I think that it is very important to give Wikisource editors a clear guidence on what should be subpages and what should be stand-alone. It can help clarify the accurate number of the source texts in Wikisource. Accurately, a subpage is not an independant source text. A book is only one source. If it has 40 chapters, according to the current number system, Wikisource will have 41 source texts. Then Wikisource seems to have much more articles than other digital libraries in this situation. But on the other hand, many articles in collective works should be stand-alone. If we put them into subpages, it will decrease the number of independant main pages. It seems that currently Wikisource cannot distinguish subpages from parentpages. The number of texts provided in Main Page seems to include both of them. I hope that in the future we can add a special page to provide the number of independant main pages (excluding subpages) in special:specialpages. Thank you. --Neo-Jay 23:48, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
The matter is not as simple as you imply. We can't simply create a perfect rule everyone follows and ignore the importance of judgment. The Style guide states that "Standalone works published as part of a collection, such as most poems, have their own pages"; whether a particular work is stand-alone depends on your judgment. I've stated my opinion (and my preference for subpages): if you can't tell whether a work is stand-alone or not, just use a subpage with a redirect.
The fact that works can be reprinted is a good reason to use subpages, since the same work printed in three different sources can be three different editions with different annotations or prefaces, every edition of which is welcome on Wikisource. Note that there is no simple automated method to count source texts on Wikisource; it would be difficult for a script to easily distinguish between a disambiguation page, a collection index, a title page, a whole work, or a chapter. This will be the case even if we enforce more specific subpaging guidelines. The best way to count works would probably be to categorize main pages to a specific category and count the pages therein. —{admin} Pathoschild 00:02:50, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Thanks. My judgment is that all articles first published in academic journals are stand-alone, and most, if not all, articles first published in newspapers and magazines are also stand-alone. At least all the articles I listed above, National Geographic Magazine/Volume 31/Number 3/What Great Britain is Doing, The International Magazine/Volume 1/Issue 1/International Weekly Miscellany/Martin Farquhar Tupper, The North American Review/Volume 171/Issue 526/The Empire of the Dead, The New York Times/Sporting Intelligence, Factsheet Five/Issue 25/Turning Over New Leaves of Grass, in my judgment, should be moved to be independant articles. You are right. There is no perfect rule. But it is not enough to only mention most poems in Style guide and rely on editors' personal judgments for all the other articles in collective works. I think that we need to provide more guidences to avoid potential edit wars.
The fact that works can be reprinted may not be a good reason to use subpage. Most pomes are also reprined and may have different editions with different annotations. But poems are treated as stand-alone pages. Regarding how to count works, I agree that even if we exclude subpages, we still need to exclude disambiguation page and index. I hope that we can find better solution in the future. Thanks. --Neo-Jay 00:34, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

(outdent)First of all Neo-Jay, strongly consider editing here for a few months before insisting certain rules need to set-up to prevent "edit wars". How can you seriously have any idea what is likely to incite an edit war in this community? This comunity is completely comfortable relying on judgement in most cases and discussing disagreement. If some wants input the entire National Geograohic Collection as subpages; GREAT! If someone wants to input all academic articles on fruit flies as stand alone pages; GREAT! Any contribution people want to make that fit the goals of this project is EXTREMELY WELCOME. We can make everything mesh together with tranclusion. The Manual of Style is tertiary. Trust the people that care most about the subject matter to make the best decision. If there is strong disagreement that cannot be compromised; consensus rules. You are not going to be able to convince this community to write a book of nitty gritty rules when they would rather spend their limited time improving the content. I am sorry if this come across harshly, but I tell you from long observation that a MOS conversation will have no further takers. You will not get enough active discussion from this community to determine consensus, and that is the only way rules can be written.

I know you will disagree with most of that Pathoschild :) But to add something else you will likely disgree with: Transclusion needs to be done over redirects because we will need the alternate header. We will need to get a technical solution that can produce a link to the actual content in the edit screen eventually. But redirects are not sufficient.--BirgitteSB 00:49, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

Thanks. I spent (or waste?) my own limited time to discuss here because I disagree with other eidtos on the subpage-standalone issue. OK, now I will move all the subpages of newspapers, magazines, journals to independant main pages and will not discuss there anymore to seek active discussion or consensus. I believe that this will be GREAT and EXTREMELY WELCOMED by you. Thank you for your encouraging. --Neo-Jay 01:01, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
I never said moving existing content would be welcome but rather new additions of content that fit the goals of this project would. Sorry if I was unclear.--BirgitteSB 01:09, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
That's why I discussed here and have not moved. Sorry if I was unclear. --Neo-Jay 01:15, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes but you do not seem to want to accept the answers you are given ("It depends, use judgement"). There is no more detailed answer, and people seem uninterested in the topic judging by the lack of participants here.--BirgitteSB 01:23, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
If I accept the answer I was given, I will use my judgment to move all the relevant subpages to stand-alone pages. But it seems not welcomed by you. I am totally confused. --Neo-Jay 01:32, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
I do not think it so confusing. If you have a work you want to add; balance out it's individuality against it's part in a collection. Look out how other works are set-up and use you judgement on where it falls. I really do not see where moving works has entered into this.--BirgitteSB 01:46, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
If you are still confused about how to set-up a particular work. Bring it up here with a link to the work (if online) and ask for advice.--BirgitteSB 01:50, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
My question is whether the existing subpages in newspapers, magazines, and journals should be moved to be stand-alone. My answer is yes, and your answer seems to be no. That's the problem. And that's why I said that that's why I discussed here and have not moved. And that why I said I am totally confused. What should I do?? Not so confusing? --Neo-Jay 01:57, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

I second much of what BirgitteSB said, although I disagree with using transclusion. Editions printed in different sources are often different, with annotations, "improvements", formatting changes, transcription mistakes, et cetera. If there is only one source on Wikisource, a redirect is sufficient; if there are multiple, a disambiguation page is.

It is my opinion that subpages are preferable in nearly all cases of periodicals, and for this reason all periodical articles I have added are on subpages. Unless there is consensus to do so, however, I will not move articles added by others to subpages; likewise, unless there is consensus to do so, you should not move the articles without reaching an agreement with the contributors.

So no, you should not move existing pages. Feel free to add redirects, though. —{admin} Pathoschild 04:01:07, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

I should not...? Your order? OK, I follow you, dear Administrator Pathoschild. And I will establish new periodical articles as stand-alone pages. I don't know whether you should not move them to subpages. But if you like to move, do as you please, since I have no authority to give any editor any order that he or she should do anything. I will not establish redirects, but will create stand-alone pages with the same content as the existing subpages. Hope this solution can satisfy both you and me. Thanks. --Neo-Jay 04:45, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
I gave no order (which would be you must, not you should), only guidance and my opinion as you asked for. Creating redundant pages is pointless and, from your tone, you are simply trying to disrupt Wikisource to make a statement. If you disagree with me, then simply continue to discuss rationally; there is no urgency in the current position of the pages. —{admin} Pathoschild 05:22:22, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
OK. I should not, but not must not. So I still can, right? Anyway, I accept your guidance and opinion and will not create poitless redundant pages. But as for those periodical articles that do not exist in Wikisource, I will create them as stand-alone pages. Hope this solution will finally satisfy both you and me. As for further rational discussion, I have already made clear my reasons why articles in academic journals, newspapers, and magazines are stand-alone. And I have simply kept asking you relevant questions and have not received answers. I am tired of repeating them. If you like, please just go back to my previous discussion and see what my questions are. If you don't like, that's also fine. You only should answer, not must (only my opinion that you may not ask for). Thanks. --Neo-Jay 07:07, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
The style guide does not specify when an article should be independent or a subpage. Previously someone thought of moving the United Nations Security Council Resolutions to subpages. Subpages sometimes allow simplified linking, but sometimes, like for the UN resolutions, their displays would look so odd, so they were moved again to full names spelling out "United Nations" with a bot. There is no fully correct answer whether articles in academic journals, newspapers, and magazines are stand-alone. Some may be but others may not be. Should it become necessary to make mass moves, having a bot may be easier than manual moves.--Jusjih 17:57, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
I don't see why this is such a big issue. A reason that subpages are used is that many times (like in magazine/newspaper articles) a particular article has no existence (meaning are not well known) outside of the magazine/newspaper it was published in. Using subpages allows us to very elegantly tie it in with all the other articles which similarly have no existence outside of their respective "parent" magazine.
Also, using subpages allows us to keep track of different editions of the same work. For example, in old newspapers (like the 1800's) in the U.S., newspapers took articles from other sources, kept the same name, but made certain changes to the article they republished. Having that one article on a stand-alone pages ignores the fact that there are very similar articles about the same event which were reused across the country. The stand-alone page indicates that this is the only article of its kind. It gives preference to one edition over another, which I think (in terms of WS) would instill a POV.
Now, academic journal articles are different from such things like newspaper articles. And, since the paper is usually known far better from the journal in which it was published (for example, does anyone know in which journal Gödel published his famous incompleteness theorems), that the stand-alone should be preferred over the subpage. However, if it ever comes to the time where we decide to import a complete journal, I think subpage naming should be preferred (either using transclusion or directly redumping the text or redirecting the standalone). I definitely think subpage naming should be preferred if we find that two journals published the same article. In this case, I think the stand-alone should be turned into a disambig page to allow people to choose between which version it will read.—Zhaladshar (Talk) 18:59, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for your opinion. But most, if not all, poems are also reprinted and have different editions. Just see our featured texts, e.g., Elegie II (in comparison with Elegy II (1896)), and the discussion at Talk:Come not, when I am dead, Talk:Darkness, Talk:Dulce et Decorum Est, Talk:Anthem for Doomed Youth, and Talk:Lights, we will find that all of these poems have different editions. Then Does the stand-alone page indicate that this is the only poem of its kind? Should poems be disambiguation pages and link to relevant subpages of different books, journals, and newspapers? It seems to me that we use the poem's original version as the main page (see Talk:Anthem for Doomed Youth, Pathoschild said: based on the above sources, in particular the original (apparently final) draft, I added indentation and prepended a dash to 02). I think this practice can also be applied to the articles published in journals. The main stand-alone page provide the original version of the article when it was first published. Then other reprinted different editions may be subpages to the relevant books and journals. For example, Is There a Santa Claus? was first published in The New York Sun on September 21, 1897. Wikipedia article Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus says this editorial remains the most reprinted editorial ever to run in any newspaper in the English language and when the editorial is reproduced today, it often omits more than half of Church's original response. Even though it may be necessary to create disambiguation page to distinguish different eiditons, the original version of this article is better to be the main article, which looks much better than The New York Sun (historical)/1897/09/27/Is There a Stanta Claus?. And then we can create a Is There a Santa Claus? (disambiguation) as disambiguation page. See the relevant guideline on disambiguation at wikipedia:en:Wikipedia:Disambiguation. Thanks. --Neo-Jay 00:03, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
First of all the we do not make collection pages unless we have a good part of the collection. Also all but one of the poems you mentioned are published posthumously, which makes them amoung the least likely to have a definative edition. The same cannot said for a poem like The Little Black Boy. Clearly there are exceptions but many poems have a definative edition, however often they are reprinted, just like your essay. This is why judgement is needed over hard and fast rules. I am sorry this thread has not been able to suffciently clarify the issue for you, perhaps it is not something that can be articulated well but simply learnt by experience.
P.S. We do not use the style guidelines from en.WP. For a typical disambig page here see If.--BirgitteSB 14:18, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Disambiguation pages on Wikisource are described in the style guide. —{admin} Pathoschild 21:49:47, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Wikisource:Story of the Day

There is a new project called Story of the Day please join and nominate stories to it also is it possible it could appear below the text of the month on unsigned comment by Java7837 05:14, 23 March 2007 (UTC).

Works displayed so prominently should be reasonably proofread and conform to Wikisource's standards (even if they haven't quite reached featured status). I think such an effort would be better aimed at a featured text of the week or even of the day. —{admin} Pathoschild 19:50:57, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Google Books / Print - Public Domain books...

(NB also put on Wikisource talk:Public Domain Books in Google Print

Apparently the PDF's available have a restrictive 'no commerical use' term, even on works that are clearly public domain. That means that AIUI you can't use the Google PDF's to create a GFDL based document because of the NC term.

Google's PDF files also use Digital watermarking meaning that pictures/figures can't DESPITE being public domain, be used here.

Shame really.. ShakespeareFan00 23:18, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

The text is PD whatever so a coversion of the PDF to text would have to be PD.17:52, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Wikisource prefers not to have PDFs anyway, so this isn't much of a problem. But the text itself is public domain, so it can be taken and OCR'd and put up on WS. Historical Library is one such work-in-progess where we are taking Google's PDF and OCRing it.—Zhaladshar (Talk) 18:40, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Hmm, but isn't OCRing from thier efforts a breach of thier NC terms, given that GFDL has no such

NC term?. Also what about images (that are part of the original work)? Granted that some figure could perhaps be 'traced' into a 'transparent' vector format, direct lifts of images runs into problems concerning so called embeded watermarking. 21:46, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer. In my understanding of US law, which is wht matters for Wikisource, public domain is public domain. You cannot state "You may only use this public domain text IF blah blah" on public domain text because it is exactly that: public domain. It has no copyright, it is not copyrightable. The addition of watermarks or terms of use or anything like that does absolutely nothing. The only way to change the copyright would be to edit the text sufficiently enough that it does not resemble the public domain text. I believe this is similar to the Bridgeman Art Library vs. Corel Corp. case, see w:Bridgeman Art Library v. Corel Corp..
However, that only applies to images. Jude (talk) 22:07, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

Authour/Title Request?

Having found Augusts De Morgans short bio on Wikipedia, I would like to request that De Morgan,Augustus;Formal Logic;(1847) be considered for addition to WikiSource should a suitable copy for transcription/ scanning/OCR exist. ShakespeareFan00 11:01, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

It's certainly out of copyright in the US and probably everywhere else, and Google books seems to have a scanned copy (search for Augustus De Morgan in Author Search). So, if you like, you can transcribe it. OCRing might be difficult with all those ſs and strange ligatures.--GrafZahl (talk) 11:51, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Noted, But Google Books has it's own issues (see previous comments re restrcitive NC terms). But if the work is genuinly PD there shouldn't be an issue. Do you know of any other basic works on logic that might be worth looking for? (I don't think Turing or Church's later papers are out of copyright yet though) 13:01, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
We already have an incomplete version of the Organon and Jean Nicod's A Reduction in the number of the Primitive Propositions of Logic. A text with similar aim by Clarence Van Horn is still under UK (but not US) copyright. Similarly, the first edition (but not the second or third one) of Principia Mathematica is likely public domain in the US, but not in the UK. Church, Post, Turing etc. are very likely copyrighted in their entirety, none of them seems to have begun publishing before 1923. We might have more luck with early Frege, Löwenheim or Skolem translations (Skolem might actually have written some works in English), particularly Frege's original work is out of copyright in many countries.--GrafZahl (talk) 13:56, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Hmm the strange f appear to mean S given the usage they are put to, but I am not sure on this. Maybe manual transcription WOULD be needed as well as Physical copy... :-( ShakespeareFan00 14:56, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
The w:long s will definately mess with the OCR. But anything old enough to be using those likely has a strange enough font to make OCR next to useless anyways. So definately manual transcription. I am not sure what you mean by physical copy.--BirgitteSB 15:16, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Why wiki?

Given that, unlike the data of an encyclopedia or the phrasing of a dictionary definition, a primary source has essentially one conceivable interpretation, what's the point of having this be user-editable? 05:05, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

Hello anonymous. There are a few good reasons to use a wiki.
  1. The idea that there is "essentially one conceivable interpretation" for each primary source is a misconception; there are very often multiple editions of an English text, or multiple translations of a non-English text, and in some cases there is no definitive version of a particular edition of a particular text. Further, Wikisource collects all source texts, including secondary and tertiary sources. Saying Wikisource doesn't need wiki editability because there is only one interpretation of a source text is like saying Wiktionary doesn't because there is only one meaning of a word.
  2. Our primary purpose is to collect source texts, but our texts include inline linking, translations, annotations, original introductions, indexing, and categorization. These would be exceedingly difficult to expand and maintain using a static website maintained by a few web masters.
  3. Perhaps because our primary purpose is the collection of source texts, the wiki software is ideal; there are far more texts written throughout human history than there are articles on every Wikipedia combined, and it is difficult enough to collect them all without being limited to a few webmasters and a static web site. With the wiki system, any visitor can instantly post a new text, create a translation, adjust an annotation, change a category, update an index, et cetera.
Once a text has been fully proofread, it is protected from editing. Until it is, though, user-editability is a great asset. —{admin} Pathoschild 06:18:15, 01 April 2007 (UTC)

A useful device

Why haven't you created some device that turns your text into green automatically if you have made no mistake, and into red if something is wrong ? It would be far easier to ameliorate one's work, particularly if the mistake itself were turned into red, then one would know where it is. What do you think of this idea ? --Zephyrus 12:15, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

How would the tool know what the third paragraph of War and Peace is 'supposed to say? Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 13:09, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
The tool you create must know that, of course. Or it wouldn't be of any use :) --Zephyrus 13:35, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
Mozilla Firefox has an integrated spell checker for textarea boxes, if that's what you're looking for. —{admin} Pathoschild 18:34:37, 01 April 2007 (UTC)
Well, a machine cannot know whether the text that we edit is the right one or not; if the machine knew the text, there would be no need for us human beings to edit it- It was nice of you both to answer, Sherurcij and Pathoschild, thank you very much. My idea wasn't meant as a serious one, only as an April's joke. Of course. - --Zephyrus 18:50, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

Moscow agreement

There is a document in English on the multilingual Wikisource: oldwikisource:Moscow agreement. Please check if you need it, otherwise I will delete it in some days. Thx, -jkb- 14:49, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

need --Java7837 00:06, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

OK if you need it so please transwiki it or something else, we shall delete it in some days on the multi-source. Let me know on oldwikisource:User talk:-jkb- that I can delete it, thx, -jkb- 08:55, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

This looks to be a copyright violation. The source for the translation is a book published in 1984.--BirgitteSB 13:57, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Request for Help with Non-English Texts

I have in my possession published German text, written by a Hungarian Rabbi over 100 years ago. I have not even the simplest grasp of the German language. If someone could (a) point me in the direction of someone who is active on de:wikisource who might be interested in adding the text there. And, (b) someone (or several someones) who would be willing to freely translate the text into English for the Benefit of en:wikisource.

I also have some commentaries (from Romanian or possibly German Rabbi, I don't recall), written in Hebrew, from about the same time, that have never been translated into English. My grasp of Hebrew is not sufficient to translate the text myself. If anyone is willing to help with this text in similar manner to the one above, please let me know. I'll make the files available to whomever requests them for this purpose. —Wikijeff 03:12, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

I don't really know anyone on the German WS. But, for the Hebrew texts, I suggest you get in touch with Dovi (probably best to contact him on the he:ws). He might know some people who would be willing to help out with the project.—Zhaladshar (Talk) 18:23, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Project Gutenberg footnotes

Here is a vim script that will format the footnotes from Project Gutenberg texts. I used it for Anabasis.

User:AndreasJ/gutenbergnotes.vim unsigned by AndreasJ 01:42, 4 April 2007.

Hello. Scripts are welcome as part of the Bot script library. —{admin} Pathoschild 19:39:08, 04 April 2007 (UTC)
Thanks, moved to User:AndreasJ/gutenbergnotes.vim AndreasJ 15:20, 5 April 2007 (UTC)
This is not a bot script and therefore does not fit into Bot script library. Moreover, it is specific for this project. AndreasJ 15:24, 5 April 2007 (UTC)
Most scripts in the library are specific to this project, and this looks to me like something a bot could use or adapt if it was formatting footnotes. —{admin} Pathoschild 16:15:04, 05 April 2007 (UTC)

Page References

Hello, I'm a newbie and this may be a question already answered, but I was inable to find the answer in the help pages: I'd need advice on the topic of page references. For ease of future proofreading I'd like to add page references to a text, basically the same that the Template:page does, only that I'd like to reference to Google Books.

  • is there a way to do so?
  • is it a good idea anyway or are there are there good reasons not to do so?

Regards --Linda.floren 10:03, 6 April 2007 (UTC)

Hello. Generally, texts should match the original format as closely as possible. I would suggest linking to particular pages on Google Books from the {{header}} notes on the wiki page, or the {{textinfo}} notes on the main discussion page. —{admin} Pathoschild 04:45:18, 07 April 2007 (UTC)

A Beautiful Prayer

Last year, I remember a protracted discussion about a contributor who had contacted or had been unable to contact an author in a third-world nation with the contributor wanting to present the author's work here, but Wikisource not allowing him because the author hadn't personally released the work.

I see some resemblance of that situation to the religious poem "A Beautiful Prayer" by w:Joanne Gobure. According to the Wikipedia article about the author, the poem has been passed around through Christian internet forums and websites. Also, the history page says the contributor of this work, has made the sole statement of release as "Author has agreed". An admin named user:AllanHainey who says on his user page he cannot work on Wikisource at the present, requested further proof of this release back in March of 2006 when the poem was first contributed.

I think at the very least a warning template should be added, but I'm not familiar enough with them to know which one to use. Can somebody please assist me by informing me of the policy in this case, as I believe it does have a precedent which would be known by Scriptorium participants?

Thank you, 04:32, 7 April 2007 (UTC)

Hello. That work is a possible copyright violation; you can place the {{copyvio}} template just below {{header}}, and add a section at Wikisource:Possible copyright violations (linked in the template message) with what you said above. —{admin} Pathoschild 04:38:30, 07 April 2007 (UTC)


How would I make it possible to reach, for example, Shakespeare's sonnets from the poetry index? SirNigpott 10:19, 9 April 2007

They can be reached from the author page by Wikisource:Poetry/Renaissance/Authors. But Wikisource:Poetry/Renaissance/Titles does not exist. You could create it similar to Wikisource:Poetry/Romantic/Titles. And if you would prefer a different format we could discuss it here. I personaly would prefer to see the index pages done as sortable tables rather than a simple alphabetical list. But I am not sure how that scales. Alpha by title can always be split into subpages eventually.--BirgitteSB 15:02, 9 April 2007 (UTC)

TI-BASIC Programming Code

I have created a number of games for the TI-83 and TI-84 calculators using the programming language built into the calculators known as TI-BASIC. I would like to post the code for each of my programming projects in new articles here on Wikisource. That way, anyone in the world could come to Wikisource and write the code into their calculators for themselves and enjoy my creations.

I believe that the code for these games would be appropriate to put here on Wikisource, because they are a type of written work. In my opinion, it would be a good way to save the code for these games permanently, and I think that a new category of work could even be added for the code of different works in different programming languages (Just like: Novels, Poetry, Lyrics, etc.)

Would it be appropriate to copy the code from my programmed games into articles here on Wikisource?


Hello. No, Wikisource does not collect user-generated source code (see the inclusion policy). However, you may be able to put it on Wikibooks, a project dedicated to user-generated books, which includes a collection of scripts. —{admin} Pathoschild 06:54:35, 10 April 2007 (UTC)

Speech Copyright Question

A speech was given and then printed in a journal in 1959. As far as I know that is the only copy of the speech. Is it copywritten property of the journal?Banjee 17:08, 8 April 2007 (UTC)

Unless the copyright was assigned to the journal or the journal itself transcribed the speech from the spoken speech the copyright would rest with the author who wrote/gave the speech & gaveit to the journal. AllanHainey 12:24, 11 April 2007 (UTC)

Alphabetized author listings?

Another question: the authors are grouped according to last name, but could we alphabetize the entries of the same letter? SirNigpott

Is this what you mean?--BirgitteSB 14:54, 9 April 2007 (UTC)

Letter from a Guantanamo captive? Appropriate use of wikisource?

The Wall Street Journal published a long article on March 31st about Stuart Couch, formerly one of the lawyers on the prosecution team for Mohamedou Ould Slahi.

The Wall Street Journal made five portable document format files available for download from their server. The other four files would clearly be in the public domain, because they were the work of a DoD employees.

The remaining file is a handwritten letter from Slahi, to his lawyers. I've transcribed it, here. It is short.

Is this an appropriate use of wikisource? What about liscensing?

There was some formatting that didn't work. When Slahi struck out a word I tried to emulate this with the use of <strike> </strike> pairs. And {{sic}}, which I am used to using on the wikipedia, didn't work here.

Cheers! -- Geo Swan 20:39, 11 April 2007 (UTC)

Welcome to Wikisource Geo :) Unfortunately, the letter penned by Slahi is unlikely to meet Wikisource's criteria, since Slahi would retain the rights to the letter, and be able to bring an injunction against anybody who wanted to modify its contents, or publish and sell it in a nice hardcover book - so it isn't really in the public domain the same way the other four documents would be. A good idea might be to see if you can't contact the lawyer and ask him whether or not Slahi would mind releasing the letter to the Public Domain, stressing that it would mean a much wider audience that the letter is dessiminated towards. Best of luck! Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 21:18, 11 April 2007 (UTC)
Darn. I'll take your advice then, and try to contact one of his lawyers.
Thanks! Geo Swan 22:06, 11 April 2007 (UTC)

Formatting questions

I am taking Sherucij's advice, and trying to figure out how to contact Slahi's lawyer.

Meanwhile I decided to put up the "Summary of Evidence" memos from the fourteen captives from the secret CIA centers where thye were subjected to, um, "extended interrogation techniques" who were transferred to Guantanamo.

Is it okay to drop the page numbering and the page headers and footers?

Is it okay to not bother centering, or right justifying elements of the text that were centered or right justified in the original?

How many links to the wikipedia are appropriate? One summary memo: Riduan Isamuddin is fully linked to the wikipedia. The rest of the memos in the following table, aren't wikified, except for the first couple of paragraphs:

Thanks! Geo Swan 19:46, 13 April 2007 (UTC)

I just noticed this question. I think it would be fine to drop the page numbering, since that can be quite annoying to have to look at. I don't know what you mean by headers and footers, but if they are, say, repeated on each page of the document, that would be fine to drop, as well. On the formatting of the actual content, WS strives to try to replicate the exact formatting of the document whenever/wherever possible. So, while you could drop the centering and justifying, we would like it even more if you tried to keep it. However, we all understand how arduous that can be at time, and it might not even be practical to attempt in some situations. Basically, it's at your discretion whether you keep the original formatting or not, although we would love it if you did.—Zhaladshar (Talk) 17:54, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
And I just noticed I missed answering your question on wikification. Looking at the Riduan Isamuddin link you presented, here are a few things I noticed. Some common phrases and words have been wikified, which probably don't need it (like country names and common terms like "enemy combatant"). I would suggest that if the document explicitly refers to a country--like United States or Singapore, both of which link to their articles on WP--then there probably isn't a need to wikify those terms. When the reference is a little unclear (such as "coalition partners" which links to w:Afghan Northern Alliance), then a link should be created. Wikilinks, in my opinion, should serve to help explicate/make clear terms in a text which would not obvious to the casual reader, and not to just link to pages on WP because the two terms are related. Usually links to countries do not add anything to the text itself, so I lean toward removing them to help keep the number of links to a minimum. This also helps us only present the most useful links to the reader, allowing the person to better understand the document but not overwhelming the person with a bunch of information that might not be relevant to the document itself.—Zhaladshar (Talk) 18:41, 15 April 2007 (UTC)

Guantanamo documents

I put up a dozen or so US DoD documents that arose from the detention of Guantanamo captives I took some advice that I create a framing article, to help readers find all the documents related to Guantanamo captives.

I called it Wikisource:Guantanamo captive's documents. I modeled the process block after: Wikisource:Pirates. Since these are my first document I put on the wikisource I'd like feedback on whether they are in the right form, and whether I left out any steps.

I created three categories, described here: User:Geo Swan/Guantanamo/Categories. I'd appreciate feedback on whether I did this right too. I put them under Category:United States military. Appropriate?

Thanks! Geo Swan 16:35, 15 April 2007 (UTC)

Hm, I think the Wikisource: page you created would best be served if it were linked from Wikisource:Historical documents (maybe somewhere in the "United States" section of that page) than from the actual Index (as the links on the Index are to be fairly broad in nature, and as you navigate, the pages become more and more specific--your Gitmo documents are quite specific in their nature).
Looking at the categories, I think "Cat:United States military" is a fine parent category, as it is about a U.S. military base. And, I think the proposed tree you've made is fine, although, I'm having a hard time seeing the relation between the categories (maybe once you've added more it'll be easier to see the category heirarchy :) ). If you have any more questions, please ask.
P.S. You might want to add {{header}} to all the pages you've created, as that is a presentation standard WS has adopted.—Zhaladshar (Talk) 17:49, 15 April 2007 (UTC)

I'm going to "Be Bold" and move it to Wikisource:Guantanamo, since we have other texts already on Wikisource related to the detention camp, that aren't written by the captives or it's just an easier name :P Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 04:49, 18 April 2007 (UTC)
Concur Geo Swan 23:09, 19 April 2007 (UTC)

original autographs

Hi . How do we find out if an autograph is real? I have just bought an old book published in 1856 entitled Longfellow Poetical Works. I bought it because it is a lovely book,with gold on the edges of the pages,and very heavy. When I read through it I found that under the photo of Longfellow on the inside there looks like his signature. Well, it is his signature but how do I know if it's genuine? Not sure if this is the right place to ask this question?

Illustrated works and layout

I just started work on Tales of Mother Goose and I had the idea to include all of Gustave Doré's illustrations of these stories. They are beautifully intricate engravings and would really illuminate the collection, but I don't know how I would set up the page. I couldn't find any other illustrated works on wikisource and so I thought I would pass this issue by the community to see if anyone has any ideas.--Metal.lunchbox 05:09, 22 April 2007 (UTC)

I'm glad to see I'm not the only fan of Gustave Dore...honestly, how did one man manage to illustrate so many iconic works? Anyways, The Velveteen Rabbit, The Princess and the Goblin, The Heathen and The Story of the Other Wise Man are a few of the illustrated works I've put up here - personally, if you're making it into sub-pages, I like the idea of a gallery of all illustrations on the main articlespace below the contents - but no point to it if you're doing something that isn't broken into chapters. I assume Mother Goose likely *would* be broken into sub-pages though, so yeah...strongly suggest gallery on the main page, then working the illustrations into the individual texts. Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 06:30, 23 April 2007 (UTC)

Didactic texts: here or wikibooks?

I found a sanskrit grammar I'd like to throw up on the internet, where do I put it? It's a textbook basically. 00:10, 24 April 2007 (UTC)

Is it a previously published textbook? Then Wikisource is the right place. Read what Wikisource includes for more information. You'll also need to make sure the grammar is in the public domain or otherwise free, so Wikisource can legally host it. Don't hesistate to ask for assistance should you need help with something (scanning, Indic scripts, whatever).--GrafZahl (talk) 08:08, 24 April 2007 (UTC)

Are these Licenses compatible?

I'm currently considering adding Iain M. Banks text A few Notes on the Culture to Wikisource. The text was originally released on the Internet by his friend and fellow Sci-Fi-Author Ken MacLeod in 1994 on the newsgroup rec.arts.sf.written (archived on google groups) and has been floating around the web ever since, bouncing from one fans private website to the next but has never been published anywhere else. As the text is both a good introduction to the Culture and a valuable addition to the referring articles on the various Wikipedias, it would be nice to keep it here in a safe place.

The problem however is, that the text was originaly released by Iain Bank with the comment:

Copyright 1994 Iain M Banks
Commercial use only by permission.
Other uses, distribution, reproduction, tearing to shreds etc are freely encouraged provided the source is acknowledged.

Clearly, this is not compatible with the PD-release license. However in essence it appears to be fully compatible with GFDL and CC-BY-2.5 with the limitation to noncommercial use. The best fitting license would be Copyrighted free use provided that on Wikimedia Commons. Three courses of action suggest themselves:

  1. putting the work under CC-BY-2.5 and adding the limitation to noncommercial use.
  2. adapting the template Copyrighted free use provided that from Wikimedia Commons for use with Wikisource.
  3. trying to optain GFDL or CC-BY license from Iain Banks, which seems unlikely.

Is there an acceptable solution for wikisource? --GCU NervousEnergy 14:49, 24 April 2007 (UTC)

Nope; Wikisource's copyright policy requires the freedom to use a work commercially. —{admin} Pathoschild 01:28:41, 25 April 2007 (UTC)

anchors without wikiheadings?

In Sanskrit Grammar I was intending to link subheadings to anchors scattered througout as the text doesn't use headings but paragraph numbers, but I noticed that <a /> isn't permitted. Any other way this can be done? 04:15, 25 April 2007 (UTC)

You can do this with {{section|anchorname|text}}, which can be linked to with [[#anchorname]]. :) —{admin} Pathoschild 04:25:39, 25 April 2007 (UTC)

The Tale of Kieu

Do you intent to add it The Tale of Kieu?

The original vietnamese is available at the Vietnamese wikisource, if you happen to know of a free English translation (one written before 1923 would be best), then we could also host that here on the English wikisource :) Sherurcij (talk) (λεμα σαβαχθανει) 09:30, 26 April 2007 (UTC)