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Trademark at issue again with the Italian Wikipedia and wikipedia.it

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By The ed17

The Italian-language Wikipedia community has overwhelmingly voted to request the Wikimedia Foundation's assistance in recovering wikipedia.it, a website that has been frequently confused with the Italian Wikipedia. While wikipedia.it currently redirects to the Italian Wikipedia, it could be altered immediately by the current domain owner and was formerly an advertisement-laden mirror. With 132 editors in support to just one oppose, the former Wikimedia Italy board member Federico Leva stated that the measure had passed with the largest-ever poll margin on the site.

The public's bewilderment is surprisingly substantial, with Italian-language contributors documenting many instances of the Italian media listing the wrong web address. Even the authorities get confused: according to Leva, when wikipedia.it was a mirror site, the Italian police "seized a page about Roberto Fiore (due to alleged libel) on wikipedia.it rather than it.wikipedia.org ... the actual article was left alone by the police and 'fixed' by the community itself."

One media mistake in January 2009 prompted Italian-language Wikipedia contributors to measure how many people visit wikipedia.it. Their calculation of 43 hits per minute during April 2009, or almost 62,000 per day, measures more than the typical daily hit rate on an English Wikipedia today's featured article. It also comprises a surprisingly high percentage of the Italian Wikipedia's main-page hit rate of 600,000–800,000 per day (in April 2009; the current figures are staggeringly lower—almost universally in the 200,000s—for unknown reasons).

Wikipedia.it purports to be operated by "Associazione Wikipedia Italia", though the site itself is operated by a company named Yepa. This Italian company's Linkedin profile describes itself as a "leading provider of Dedicated and Shared Hosting Solutions" that "offers unsurpassed reliability, redundancy and connectivity to four major internet backbone providers around the world." Yepa appeared to be mirroring Wikipedia while adding advertisements using frames.

Italian-language Wikipedians circumvented this with "sabotage": a Javascript hack that was activated when the Italian Wikipedia was mirrored inside a frame on an outside site, redirecting readers to the actual Wikipedia page. Leva told the Signpost that this "trick" was not countered until a small note was added asking users to use the actual Wikipedia address. "In a matter of days", he said, "the domain owner instituted a redirect himself, overriding ours, [so] we can't do anything to prevent him from showing his company's ads for some seconds to all visitors." The site currently redirects to the Italian Wikipedia after several seconds of seeing "hosted by Yepa" in a top frame, though this could be changed by the domain owner at any time.

The problem stems from the large differences in registering a .org and a .it website. .org was one of the original generic top-level domains. At the time the Italian Wikipedia was started, the suffix would have been granted by VeriSign Global Registry Services, a US company. On the other hand, .it is the country code top-level domain for Italy, and individuals looking to register a website with that suffix must do so with Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, an independent organization formed in 1923 to promote scientific and technological research. It appears that no one registered wikipedia.it in Italy, possibly as a consequence of the ad hoc basis of Wikipedia's operations in its early years. While some attempts were made by Italian-language editors to contact the domain owner in 2004, "official" organizations were either in their infancy or non-existent: the Wikimedia Foundation was not founded until halfway through 2003, and the local chapter followed in 2005.

But with this problem stretching back years—and the unbalanced poll result indicating what Leva called a "state of deep frustration and anger in the community at large"—why ask for the Foundation's assistance only now? The answer lies deep within the Foundation's most recent budget, which allocates US$700,000 for issues related to the Wikimedia trademark (p. 11, footnote iii). The Italian-language contributors hope that a small portion of this will be devoted to the €2–4000 cost of mounting a challenge to domain ownership.

In brief

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We can't turn off VE and then "expect to be the main focus of development"? Seems petty. And pointless. How does the language of a wiki that a VE bug was found in bear upon the importance of that bug? In most cases it doesn't. The bug could reoccur on any wiki. A bug is a bug, end of story.--greenrd (talk) 17:16, 16 November 2013 (UTC)[reply]

However in practice the bug/feature line tends to blur a bit so its fairly reasonable that features for other projects be given priority. If their work squashes some bugs in the process thats all to the good for when we next look at VE.©[[user:Geni|Geni]] (talk) 23:03, 16 November 2013 (UTC)[reply]
If the WMF concentrated more on issues brought forwards by the community than we would likely have more successful projects. For example I brought forwards one significant issue I see (not enough technical tools to deal with copyright infringement [1]). Not sure if it will change anything though. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) (if I write on your page reply on mine) 11:02, 17 November 2013 (UTC)[reply]

I read : "the current figures are staggeringly lower—almost universally in the 200,000s—for unknown reasons". There is a simple explanation, stats.grok.se only counts the hits in HTTP, not HTTPS. If you are not convinced, see the stats for this Signpost issue [2]. Many anonymous readers use HTTP, but not the registered users anymore. Cantons-de-l'Est (talk) 09:30, 17 November 2013 (UTC)[reply]

Ah so you mean this might simply be a technical issue with counting? Doc James (talk · contribs · email) (if I write on your page reply on mine) 11:00, 17 November 2013 (UTC)[reply]
Maybe the software guy who wrote that program never expected to count anything else than HTTP requests. He can modify the program, but if I am right, he has no intention to enhance the program in order to count the HTTPS requests. I would guess that he knows the problem, but cannot figure out an easy way to change the program. Cantons-de-l'Est (talk) 23:55, 18 November 2013 (UTC)[reply]
Nope does not appear to be the issue [3] Doc James (talk · contribs · email) (if I write on your page reply on mine) 08:55, 21 November 2013 (UTC)[reply]





       

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