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Author Topic: Site: Revised RHDN Policy  (Read 46104 times)

RHDNBot

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Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« on: September 30, 2008, 07:10:33 am »
Update By: Nightcrawler

This is an announcement regarding a policy change I thought was important enough to warrant a news item on. On the disclaimer at the bottom of this page you will now find revised wording concerning our previously long standing removal/deletion policy.

Our previous policy allowed unconditional removal of files, and in many cases entries, at the request of an author of any material on our site. One of the primary missions of Romhacking.net is the preservation of the files and information circulating in the hacking community. However, we have to balance this mission with the wishes of the authors. Our previous unconditional policy was starting to significantly conflict with goals of the site pertaining to archiving and preservation of data.

In the past several months our unconditional policy has been abused. Staff members became upset with requests resulting in:
  • Spending time fixing up and processing an author's entry only to have them ask it be removed days later.
  • Getting mass deletion requests for all material belonging to an author with no reason or weak reason given.
  • Getting random deletion requests for material on the site for years with reasons cited as “don't feel like having it hosted here anymore”.
  • Unfair deletion of other related material submitted by others such as reviews, descriptions etc.


These types of requests became more frequent resulting in additional wasted time and effort by staff and unfair consequence of removal of information from others. Furthermore, removal of project information is a detriment to the community. Removal of such information and project acknowledgment only hurts the community as a whole.

In meeting both the interest of staff duties (ultimately staff should only be screeners here) and best interest of the community, staff has agreed to change the policy to no longer be unconditional.

We feel we have come up with a reasonable policy that is fair to site, authors, and community. The new policy:

Quote

In the event a third party, in good faith, submitted your work without consent, you may request deletion via the Contact Staff Form. First party submissions imply permission to archive said work permanently and deletion requests without critical reasoning will be denied. The term ‘deletion’ guarantees file removal only. Entry information is considered RHDN public content and not included in removal.


In summary, we still respect unconditional deletion requests on material submitted to our site in good faith by third parties that an author may not have wished to appear here. However first party submissions by the author themselves will not be allowed to be deleted without very strong reasoning such as critical bug/s or something that will generally result in negative consequence by being available to the community.

Also of note is the fact that deletions only include files and do not include entry information or related RHDN public information in interest of data preservation, preventing redundancy, and best community service.

Feel free to discuss the new policy in the topic created by this post.

Relevant Link: (http://www.romhacking.net)

tc

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2008, 07:24:55 am »
I have to agree. Asking to content deleted for little or no practical reason, isn't beneficial to the community at large.

Not that I've submitted anything here myself (my projects tend to stall due to lack of technical abilit)y. But I did submit an item I'd want it shared and enjoyed. Or usually even improved on, if someone wants to.
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dshadoff

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2008, 12:45:18 pm »
This policy is coherent, but doesn't appear to address the situation where authorship is shared among several people, and a dispute occurs between them.

But perhaps you have not yet experienced that situation yet ?

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2008, 01:01:46 pm »
As former staff. I completely agree with this decision. Once something is released...It's out in the open. Generally, requests for removal were based on issues with members here and had nothing to do with content itself.

If they don't like it, too bad.

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2008, 01:43:03 pm »
This policy is coherent, but doesn't appear to address the situation where authorship is shared among several people, and a dispute occurs between them.

But perhaps you have not yet experienced that situation yet ?


Let's hope that situation doesn't come up.

Those arguments need to be handled by those involved, and not spill over here. They have to make a joint decision to determine what they want, even if others in their group disagree.
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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2008, 02:34:53 pm »
First post.

Just wanted to say that I completelly agree that once things are made public they should stay where they are, unless for really important reasons. If someone wants to mantain control over something, host it yourself so you can pull the plug yourself, but don't give something out to a third party to publish it for you and for free and later come saying you changed your mind and have them remove it as it never existed.

I'm sad to hear that things have been lost this way in the past. I'm not sure if I want to know how big the loss has been so far, but I'm happy to know it won't be happening any more.

About the problem of shared authorship, I agree with dshadoff in that it's their problem, not RHDN's.
Shared authorship is an "internal affair" and should not be adressed by RHDN. This is a hacking community, not a court of justice.
The most RHDN should do is allow the group's members to name one of them as a voicer who will speak in the name of the group and whose decission is not to be "officially" contested by the other members. If they chose a bad voicer and conflict ensues, too bad for them. Better luck next time.
In any case, that voicer's decission is only to be submitted to the ruling authorities (RHDN) who will have the last word and executive power over the matter of the removal, which will be, of course, uncontested.
« Last Edit: September 30, 2008, 03:11:35 pm by radorn »

Nightcrawler

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2008, 04:18:56 pm »
This policy is coherent, but doesn't appear to address the situation where authorship is shared among several people, and a dispute occurs between them.

But perhaps you have not yet experienced that situation yet ?

Thankfully that actually hasn't come up. Though for this to be a problem, you'd have to have the condition where someone with part ownership decided to release something to RHDN against the wishes of the other authors or some type of internal drama like that. From the past few years that would appear to be something that doesn't happen much anymore (+1 for ROM hacking community societal evolution).

If something like that did occur, we'd probably remove said item until the group's internal conflict was resolved. I think it's unlikely that this will happen though. You aren't planning on such activity are you? :P

As a secondary thought, the person who did this rogue releasing would probably fall under poor community ethics which we don't support anyway.
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dshadoff

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2008, 04:20:02 pm »
Er, I meant that one of the members of the group decides to publish it here, but without the consent or approval of the others.
Happens all the time, I would expect.

De-facto, if they disgree among themselves, then none of them is the "voicer", and none of them can be trusted to be telling the whole story.

I would recommend to treat this type of squabble as a 3rd-party posting, rather than become embroiled in a dispute.

Quote
You aren't planning on such activity are you?
Heh, no.

Nightcrawler

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2008, 04:26:05 pm »
Happens all the time, I would expect.

It does? Examples please. I'd like to be know about these things if I'm ignorant enough not to know of any of them!
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dshadoff

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2008, 04:32:47 pm »
I'm happy to say that I don't have any examples of people taking arguments too far beyond the boards.

Generally, the disputes happen over whether somebody actually did enough (insert measure here) to claim partial authorship in the first place.

I have never been embroiled in one of these (thankfully), but I've seen flamewars on messageboards over this sort of thing, and I wouldn't be surprised to see it bleed over to released materials.

radorn

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #10 on: September 30, 2008, 05:17:38 pm »
In the scheme I'm suggesting, one can't selfproclaim himself the voicer, of course.
For a group to publish something under these terms, the voicer (or lack there of) would need to be backed by all interested parties at publishing time, but once one is named it means that all members that are not the voicer accept to give up their right to ask for removal or to stand against it. Of course, all removal requests are to be submitted to RHDN staff to decide if it is applicable or not.

Rogue submissions of works that belong to more people than the person submitting it or don't belong to the submitter at all, and the original authors have not given explicit permission for it to be submitted, are a completelly different matter.
In these cases, where authorship rights have not been respected, a removal is due, undoubtedly, but the case presented above is different because it depicts what I would call "whimsical behavior" by the very authors of something they submitted themselves.

If you are, say, a painter and voluntarily donate a picture you painted yourself to a museum that takes care of all the work and costs of showing it to the public and even listens to your suggestions and demands about how it should be presented and many other details, it's quite egoistical and unfair to everyone involved to come later and say "no no, remove my pictures, I'm taking them to another museum" or "I don't want them on public display any longer, so take them out".

Then again, all that "voicer" stuff was just a suggestion of a way to mantain order while keeping a reasonable amount of respect to the authors' will. In the end, if you voluntarily publish something of your own in a community which you aren't responsible for and/or fully pay for it, you have no right to remove something just for the sake of it. It needs to be a real good reason.

Piotyr

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #11 on: September 30, 2008, 05:47:03 pm »
So can we have any examples of what was lost but now is found?

tc

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #12 on: September 30, 2008, 07:34:09 pm »
Some of the removed things can probably be found elsewhere with a search engine. Don't know if that's true for all.
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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #13 on: September 30, 2008, 09:16:00 pm »
Update By: Nightcrawler

This is an announcement regarding a policy change I thought was important enough to warrant a news item on. On the disclaimer at the bottom of this page you will now find revised wording concerning our previously long standing removal/deletion policy.

Our previous policy allowed unconditional removal of files, and in many cases entries, at the request of an author of any material on our site. One of the primary missions of Romhacking.net is the preservation of the files and information circulating in the hacking community. However, we have to balance this mission with the wishes of the authors. Our previous unconditional policy was starting to significantly conflict with goals of the site pertaining to archiving and preservation of data.

In the past several months our unconditional policy has been abused. Staff members became upset with requests resulting in:
  • Spending time fixing up and processing an author's entry only to have them ask it be removed days later.
  • Getting mass deletion requests for all material belonging to an author with no reason or weak reason given.
  • Getting random deletion requests for material on the site for years with reasons cited as “don't feel like having it hosted here anymore”.
  • Unfair deletion of other related material submitted by others such as reviews, descriptions etc.

These types of requests became more frequent resulting in additional wasted time and effort by staff and unfair consequence of removal of information from others. Furthermore, removal of project information is a detriment to the community. Removal of such information and project acknowledgment only hurts the community as a whole.

In meeting both the interest of staff duties (ultimately staff should only be screeners here) and best interest of the community, staff has agreed to change the policy to no longer be unconditional.

We feel we have come up with a reasonable policy that is fair to site, authors, and community. The new policy:

Quote
In the event a third party, in good faith, submitted your work without consent, you may request deletion via the Contact Staff Form. First party submissions imply permission to archive said work permanently and deletion requests without critical reasoning will be denied. The term ‘deletion’ guarantees file removal only. Entry information is considered RHDN public content and not included in removal.

In summary, we still respect unconditional deletion requests on material submitted to our site in good faith by third parties that an author may not have wished to appear here. However first party submissions by the author themselves will not be allowed to be deleted without very strong reasoning such as critical bug/s or something that will generally result in negative consequence by being available to the community.

Also of note is the fact that deletions only include files and do not include entry information or related RHDN public information in interest of data preservation, preventing redundancy, and best community service.

Feel free to discuss the new policy in the topic created by this post.

Relevant Link: (http://www.romhacking.net)

 :huh: Are you guys serious!? This is a joke, right!?
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InVerse

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #14 on: September 30, 2008, 09:31:08 pm »
Well, since you're publicly stating that you have no intention of following copyright law, I would recommend that you also unlock the "Where To Get ROMs Thread".

There's also a possible side effect to this new policy that you failed to take into consideration. I, for one, will not be submitting any of the new translations, documents or utilities that I'll hopefully have completed by the end of the year. I might be the only one who feels this way, but based on Bongo`s reaction in this thread and a couple of well known hackers comments via IM, I'm guessing I won't be.

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #15 on: September 30, 2008, 09:52:36 pm »
Once something is released...It's out in the open.

If someone wants to mantain control over something, host it yourself so you can pull the plug yourself

Seconded.


:huh: Are you guys serious!? This is a joke, right!?

It's a compromise. And when will you actually need to remove stuff?

FranMichaels

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #16 on: September 30, 2008, 10:19:38 pm »
I think for one it's a rockin' policy.

The rom hacking.net community as a whole should not be at the mercy of the whims of those submitting patches, translations, documentation, etc. If you don't like the policy, don't agree to host your things here in the first place. That's the point.

If there are really good reasons to keeping the older policy, how about a time limit?
Does it make sense that anyone can just have something pulled from the site after years have passed just because?

Also, is the new policy retroactive? If so, then I can see the objections as being valid. Just make the policy apply to newly submitted work, so those submitting content know what;s up...
« Last Edit: September 30, 2008, 10:29:21 pm by FranMichaels »
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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #17 on: September 30, 2008, 10:53:32 pm »
I, for one, will not be submitting any of the new translations, documents or utilities that I'll hopefully have completed by the end of the year.

:'(

Where will you be releasing them?
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Piotyr

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #18 on: September 30, 2008, 11:04:19 pm »
There is no copywrite on patches made that use other copywrited material. While this place does have an honor system don't bring the word copywrite into it.
Lets not pull a mugen on this community where everyone will not let anyone host their stuff anywhere but their own sites. Its just stupid. Why would you want it pulled anyway? I thought people released these patches to get them to a wider audience and let more people play these great games.
I thought the design docs were there to help others not to get epeen from documenting your findings.
Please tell me why you would want to remove these files.
Please tell me why you would be against this policy.
So far you two have only mention you don't like it not why.

KaioShin

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Re: Site: Revised RHDN Policy
« Reply #19 on: October 01, 2008, 03:04:25 am »
Well, since you're publicly stating that you have no intention of following copyright law, I would recommend that you also unlock the "Where To Get ROMs Thread".

There's also a possible side effect to this new policy that you failed to take into consideration. I, for one, will not be submitting any of the new translations, documents or utilities that I'll hopefully have completed by the end of the year. I might be the only one who feels this way, but based on Bongo`s reaction in this thread and a couple of well known hackers comments via IM, I'm guessing I won't be.

Do you flip polarity every week, just so you can always complain about anything we do? First you're all for "everything I release is free for everyone to modify and distribute as much as he wants since it wasn't legal to begin with" (Hacks of hacks topic) and now it's "Oh you bad guys don't honor our hosting rights so I won't submit new stuff anymore"? Ever since you left staff you post nothing but whining and backstabs on every comment we give. If you don't like it here then leave. If you plan to do your own grand romhacking site for everyone and their brother then DO SO and see how it works out. Oh wait, whining is easier than doing something productive yourself, I totally forgot.

The rest that wasn't happy with the change: I've yet so see a good reason given why you don't like this. A simple "Oh noes" won't help anyone. I'm sure we can discuss things if you give us at least something to work with. A simple "Are you serious?" isn't helpful. As we stated, we will files if a good reason is given. We just had too many bullshit requests recently, there is no reason to get panic now thinking we'd rob everyone.
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