Wikinews:Water cooler/policy



Policies and guidelines and the Style guide contain or link to most of the current en.Wikinews policies and guidelines, however policy is based on the accepted practices of the day on Wikinews, often these might not be written down. This section of the Water cooler focuses on discussions regarding policy issues.

You may wish to check the archives to see if a subject has been raised previously.

Interviewees' awareness of the CC-BY licenseEdit

I've been thinking. Have interviewees been aware that their responses would be published under CC-BY and would be reused commercially? If so, would the interviewees be concerned about how their responses would be used? If not, must interviewees be told about it? Must they be concerned about the way their responses to questions would be derived into other works? --George Ho (talk) 23:49, 16 August 2019 (UTC)

I am certainly no copyright lawyer, but it would seem to me when one gives an interview, it becomes the intellectual property of the interviewer. The interviewer is free to do with it as they see fit. They could release it commercially themselves, they could sell it to another outlet, they could even release it as public domain. I do not see any circumstance where Wikinews would need to give any special disclosure about our CC BY 2.5 license to interviewees. --SVTCobra 17:49, 17 August 2019 (UTC)
According to the articles (#1, #2) and one book, the copyright of an interview may belong to either an interviewer, an interviewee, or both. Even one university provides some release form about its own interviews just to avoid complications. --George Ho (talk) 19:15, 17 August 2019 (UTC)
Interviewees are told where the interview is headed as a matter of journalistic ethics. --Pi zero (talk) 19:19, 17 August 2019 (UTC)
After reading those two items, it would seem the interview is always the property of the interviewer (or sometimes both, which means either could publish it). The only situation in which a court could find an interviewee had sole rights, would be if there was an agreement the interviewee would own it (usually an interview-for-hire) or if the interviewee's right of publicity was violated (underhandedly using a part of the interview as a product endorsement in advertising, for example) or pretending the conversation is not an interview. In other words, I don't think we have anything to worry about. --SVTCobra 19:33, 17 August 2019 (UTC)
Either way, it is an issue which has nothing to do with CC-BY as such. --SVTCobra 20:21, 17 August 2019 (UTC)
I wonder if this is what they teach at journalism school.
So by telling the interviewee "This is for Wikinews," we are allowing them to look up Wikinews' licensing practices, and we consider that part of their decision of whether or not to accept the interview? Darkfrog24 (talk) 23:03, 17 August 2019 (UTC)
I don't know what they teach in journalism classes, but for your next part: Well, yes, in a way. But the license is irrelevant. Rather they should be concerned with what type of publication it is and its reputation, not the license. Agreeing to an interview is (as I have learned today) an implied "grant of gift" verbally or otherwise. Of course, lawyers always prefer to have everything in writing (and I am sure they'd also like you to consult with them before accepting the next EULA from the latest app you downloaded for your phone). As far as the "shared ownership" George was mentioning, it appears to mean the courts have found the interviewee owns their own words. That is, the interviewer can't sue the interviewee for copyright infringement if they use the exact same words elsewhere (in another interview or in their own works). I appreciate George's inquiry and feel like I learned something today by reading about it, but I see no need to worry or feel any obligation besides stating it is for Wikinews which a project of the Wikimedia Foundation (and if they ask "what's that?" say "the people who also started Wikipedia"). Cheers, --SVTCobra 23:17, 17 August 2019 (UTC)
BTW, reading the Stanford generic release form, did bring up the notion of minors. If we were to ever interview a child (legal minor) we should get, at a minimum, implied consent by the parent/legal guardian by them being present at the interview. --SVTCobra 23:28, 17 August 2019 (UTC)

Privilege expiry policyEdit

Admins and cratsEdit

Hi. I'd like to suggest that we take a look at the Wikinews:Privilege expiry policy, which I just came across. The following privileged users appear to be inactive (just looked at sysops and 'crats, not reviewers or accredited reporters yet). All users mentioned are pinged. All 'crats listed are also administrators.

User Last edit Last log entry User group
Brian ( talk · contribs · dcontribs · blk · del · prot · rght · rn-user · rev) 20170708235335 20120907054923 bureaucrat
Brian McNeil ( talk · contribs · dcontribs · blk · del · prot · rght · rn-user · rev) 20180726112537 20160609082833 bureaucrat
Cspurrier ( talk · contribs · dcontribs · blk · del · prot · rght · rn-user · rev) 20160531234207 20140410182251 bureaucrat
ShakataGaNai ( talk · contribs · dcontribs · blk · del · prot · rght · rn-user · rev) 20180825182645 20180825182645 bureaucrat
Skenmy ( talk · contribs · dcontribs · blk · del · prot · rght · rn-user · rev) 20140115112948 20121227193534 bureaucrat
Tyrol5 ( talk · contribs · dcontribs · blk · del · prot · rght · rn-user · rev) 20190106175957 20190106175957 sysop

Pinging the users: @Brian, Brian McNeil, Cspurrier, ShakataGaNai, Skenmy, Tyrol5:

Are there any objections to posting a request on meta for the rights to be removed? (Specifically, remove 'crat rights and leave sysop rights, or remove sysop, respectively) Thanks, --DannyS712 (talk) 03:36, 19 October 2019 (UTC)

I check in periodically, though I'm more active on en.wp. I'd like to keep the sysop bit on my account in case I do come across something I can help with. Thank you for the ping, though; I will make an effort to maintain a level of log/edit activity that meets the policy. Tyrol5 (talk) 16:45, 19 October 2019 (UTC)
@DannyS712: I would like to think a bit more about the 'crats. I might be inclined to go ahead and ask at meta for all of them to be de-crat'd, or maybe there's some reason I'd prefer to hold back on some; not sure, of course, till I take a closer look. Thanks for tabulating the list; that's helpful. (Of course, only 'crats would be a matter for meta, as I'm a 'crat as well as admin and can de-sysop and de-reviewer myself.) --Pi zero (talk) 19:12, 19 October 2019 (UTC)
I didn't realize that enwikinews 'crats could revoke admin rights --DannyS712 (talk) 19:16, 19 October 2019 (UTC)
Thanks Tyrol5, really appreciate the commitment. Gryllida (talk) 03:12, 2 December 2019 (UTC)
@Pi zero: any update? I can re-run the numbers if you want. Just let me know --DannyS712 (talk) 06:33, 14 November 2019 (UTC)
Given the lack of a response, and that its been a month since my original post, with only 1 of the users responding, I'm requesting on meta that the 'crat rights be removed, per policy. --DannyS712 (talk) 08:01, 21 November 2019 (UTC)
@DannyS712: I've just been a little slow getting back to you. I've carefully kept this on my watchlist. Any day now, I was going to request a subset of these. --Pi zero (talk) 13:27, 21 November 2019 (UTC)
The hold-up was that I hoped to put some thought into which of these to request first, perhaps leaving some of them a bit longer (or perhaps not, depending on what emerged). However, there's nothing against the policy in these requests; so, done is done. --Pi zero (talk) 13:37, 21 November 2019 (UTC)
Rights were   removed by Wim b. --DannyS712 (talk) 20:54, 21 November 2019 (UTC)
User talk page notifications delivered. --DannyS712 (talk) 20:58, 21 November 2019 (UTC)
I might have held back on SGN, at least on a first round. --Pi zero (talk) 21:12, 21 November 2019 (UTC)
I have no objections to starting a discussion on changing the policy, but as long as we have a clear policy it should be enforced --DannyS712 (talk) 21:18, 21 November 2019 (UTC)


USer Last edit Last log entry User group
Brion VIBBER 20140627165137 20050717084618 editor
Crtew 20150508144235 20150506125359 editor
Rayboy8 20151208225638 20151207223447 editor
Cirt 20160505034404 20160325135230 editor
KTo288 20170620031332 20170620013436 editor

Can an admin please remove reviewer rights from the above five users, per policy? Thanks, --DannyS712 (talk) 21:26, 21 November 2019 (UTC)

Accredited reportersEdit

Per policy, the following users' accreditation has expired, as the user has not edited in the last 9 months.

Can someone process this? Thanks, --DannyS712 (talk) 21:46, 21 November 2019 (UTC)

Accreditation we rarely remove. --Pi zero (talk) 21:49, 21 November 2019 (UTC)
Then shouldn't the policy reflect that? --DannyS712 (talk) 01:16, 22 November 2019 (UTC)
Eh, maybe. Though the policy doesn't require any removal of privs, just allows it. I thought some of those numbers were a little on the low side. But I'd forgotten accreditation was even in the policy. --Pi zero (talk) 02:03, 22 November 2019 (UTC)
Without any comment on whether or not removal is needed here -- something that I do not believe I should have an opinion on -- I would suggest that in the case someone wanted to check the activity, it would need to be measured not only in edits on-wiki, but in the usage of the internal journalism workspace and internal email. Gryllida (talk) 03:19, 2 December 2019 (UTC)