On 06/03/2017 06:37, Gergő Tisza wrote:
On Sun, Mar 5, 2017 at 6:06 AM, Todd Allen <toddmal...@gmail.com> wrote:

I'm not a German speaker, and I know context and nuance can be lost in
machine translation. That being said, the one about someone who was
offering attribution and then got slapped with a bill for a simple
technical error is very disturbing. Especially since as brought up before,
a direct link would always lack the attribution contained on an
accompanying page.

I can read some German and looked into a similar case the last time this
came up (the thread was called "harald bischoff advertising to make images
"for the wikimedia foundation" and then suing users"). It involved (amongst
others) an amateur news blog which took an image from the Wikipedia article
of some politician and credited it to "Wikipedia" (with link to the image
description page; but no author or license), and was slapped with a ~$1000
fee. These kind of predatory tactics hurt the reputation and moral standing
of the movement IMO.

I think asking for damages might be acceptable if
- the reuser is a big organization which has its own copyright lawyers
(e.g. a commercial news publisher) and really should have known better
- the reuser refuses to fix the attribution when asked
- the reuser does not even attempt to indicate that the image is from
but when none of those is the case, threatening to sue violates the spirit
of free content, even if it is in accordance with the fine print of the

But Commons does the same thing in reverse. I recall some 12yo uploading a photograph of a butterfly in the mistaken belief that it could only be used on wikipedia. Then when realising the mistake wanted the image removed. The Commons denizens harangued and hounded the kid across various talk and administrator pages for several weeks in respect to the fine print of the license.

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