[TOS] Textbook: author attribution

Karsten Wade kwade at redhat.com
Wed Mar 24 16:23:20 UTC 2010

On Wed, Mar 24, 2010 at 11:17:54AM -0400, Greg DeKoenigsberg wrote:
> On Wed, 24 Mar 2010, Matthew Jadud wrote:
>> If you borrow and edit a large chunk of someone else's text, are you
>> an "author?" Were they an "co-author" of the book?
>> I think, when borrowing, you should acknowledge the lift at the end of
>> the chapter where the borrowing took place, and perhaps duplicate that
>> in an overall ack at the end of the text. This acknowledges their
>> contribution, but they are not directly a contributor to the new,
>> unique work that the book you're writing represents. Therefore, I
>> don't think they would be "co-authors" in the traditional sense. (Yes,
>> this isn't "traditional," but at some point you might want an ISBN,
>> and you don't want librarians to have a brain hemmorage when you try
>> and put something on them that doesn't fit Dublin Core. They will make
>> it fit, regardless of any new ideas you throw at them...)
>> I would leave "co-authors" of the text to mean "people who contributed
>> *directly* to the assembly of the artifact you are calling a book." If
>> there are people who don't fit the title of author, add a Colophon a
>> la many O'Reilly texts, where you acknowledge the editors, anyone who
>> does design work on the book, the tools used, etc. I don't think that
>> the re-use of CC-licensed text necessarily means that the original
>> author had any creative input into The Work that the new
>> book/article/etc. represents.
> All right, this is a good articulation of that funny feeling in my gut.  
> Thanks.


I also was trying to find a way to say that but didn't know how.  I
was thinking of co-authors and contributors, with the latter providing
something for the book but not fully accountable for the final result.

- Karsten
name:  Karsten 'quaid' Wade, Sr. Community Gardener
team:                Red Hat Community Architecture 
uri:               http://TheOpenSourceWay.org/wiki
gpg:                                       AD0E0C41
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