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Author Topic: Coding Horror Asks: Are You a Digital Sharecropper?  (Read 4111 times)

mouser

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Coding Horror Asks: Are You a Digital Sharecropper?
« on: August 12, 2009, 09:04:06 AM »
Jeff Atwood has been writing recently about his popular Stack Overflow site, and his thoughts on who really owns the content of social network websites, and what a users bill of rights might look like.  These ideas are relevant to any web forum, and worth discussing here.

Quote
I think you should be asking yourself some tough questions:
  • What do you get out of the time and effort you've invested in this website? Personally? Professionally? Tangibly? Intangibly?
  • Is your content attributed to you, or is it part of a communal pool?
  • What rights do you have for the content you've contributed?
  • Can your contributions be revoked, deleted, or permanently taken offline without your consent?
  • Can you download or archive your contributions?
  • Are you comfortable with the business model and goals of the website you're contributing to, and thus directly furthering?


mouser

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Re: Coding Horror Asks: Are You a Digital Sharecropper?
« Reply #1 on: August 12, 2009, 09:07:55 AM »
I guess my feeling is that anything posted by someone remains their intellectual copyrighted work to do with as they please, with the exception that they shouldn't be able to remove it from the public forum except under extreme circumstances.

zridling

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Re: Coding Horror Asks: Are You a Digital Sharecropper?
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2009, 08:01:00 PM »
Atwood specifically uses social networking sites as his example, and in those cases, users have to know going in that whatever they post is owned by that corporation, not by them. That wouldn't bother folks as much as (1) they turn around and make billions from community-contributed content, and (2) they're terrible at protecting your 'private' data, whatever that entails.

I vastly prefer a freewheeling web to what Facebook is trying to do, which is return to the days of AOL and Compuserve and serve as online gated communities.

Stoic Joker

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Re: Coding Horror Asks: Are You a Digital Sharecropper?
« Reply #3 on: August 19, 2009, 06:46:09 AM »
I vastly prefer a freewheeling web to what Facebook is trying to do, which is return to the days of AOL and Compuserve and serve as online gated communities.
I think that depends on how one perceives the "gate" ... Does it keep the riff-raff out, or the lunatics in?

Granted I have Zero use for any of the "Social Networking" sites as they seem to be filled with the same constant mindless prattle that made me tired of going to bars. The web was much more fun back when you actually had to know something to get on it.

40hz

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Re: Coding Horror Asks: Are You a Digital Sharecropper?
« Reply #4 on: August 19, 2009, 05:21:36 PM »
All the more reason to actually read the Conditions and Terms of Use agreement before you sign up for anything.

In the USA, you automatically "own your own words" under law - UNLESS - you enter into an agreement to waive your rights.

Clicking that little check box that says "I have read and accept the terms and conditions..." is all it takes to irrevocably waive your ownership and control over anything you put up on a given website.

Despite the fact we're in a digital world, one bit of advice still holds: Know what you are getting into before you sign on the dotted line!

Unfortunately, it's almost impossible to know what you're agreeing to, since nearly every site has a "subject to change without notice" clause built in to their usage contract. ::)

So I guess the answer ultimately depends on who you're dealing with. Just like everything else, come to think of it. ;D





zridling

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Re: Coding Horror Asks: Are You a Digital Sharecropper?
« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2009, 02:45:11 PM »
Unfortunately, it's almost impossible to know what you're agreeing to, since nearly every site has a "subject to change without notice" clause built in to their usage contract. ::)

Ah, and there's the rub, my friend.