11/17/2005

Daily Kos: Open Source Media (TM)

Pajamas Media has launched under a new moniker, Open Source Media, or in their officially-sanctioned shorthand OSM TM. Yes, the trademark symbol is part of the abbreviation to remind people that they're not that "open source". And in case you get any funny ideas about freely distributing and modifying any of OSM TM's intellectual property, every page is accompanied by a copyright notice and a link to the privacy policy

Open Source Media (TM)
by kos
Wed Nov 16, 2005 at 01:37:46 PM CST

The Open Source movement began in the software world:

The basic idea behind open source is very simple: When programmers can read, redistribute, and modify the source code for a piece of software, the software evolves. People improve it, people adapt it, people fix bugs. And this can happen at a speed that, if one is used to the slow pace of conventional software development, seems astonishing.

Scoop is open source. The improvements and features developed by Daily Kos are eventually available in the public Scoop download. If others make improvements to Scoop, I then have access to those improvements. Collaboratively, the entire Scoop community is building and improving on the platform.

The same concept has spread to the online media landscape, where anyone can publish, borrow from each other, remix, and reuse -- and there's a community that encourages that reuse. Creative Commons and other open source licensing schemes have cropped up to explicitly provide for those rights. Daily Kos tries to live the open source content ideal, with a "copyright" notice that invites people to take and use whatever content they want, however they want, without asking for permission.

Now, I've refrained from criticizing Pajamas Media, since it's hard to criticize something which is still so dramatically undefined. But I've got to say, given the context on the "open source" label I've sketched out above, their new name "OSM" is hilariously wrong.

As the Talent Show notes:

Pajamas Media has launched under a new moniker, Open Source Media, or in their officially-sanctioned shorthand OSM TM. Yes, the trademark symbol is part of the abbreviation to remind people that they're not that "open source". And in case you get any funny ideas about freely distributing and modifying any of OSM TM's intellectual property, every page is accompanied by a copyright notice and a link to the privacy policy:

Our Site and all its contents, which includes, but is not limited to, text, graphics, photographs, logos, video and audio content, is protected by copyright as a collective work or compilation under the copyright laws of the United States and other countries. All individual components of Our Site, including, without limitation, articles, content and other elements comprising Our Site are also copyrighted works. Additionally all of the weblogs linked to by us are likewise protected. You must abide by all additional copyright notices or restrictions contained on this site and our linked weblogs [...]

The jury may still be out on whether or not OSM TM is a thinly-disguised conservative blog circlejerk, one thing is already clear. They're not open source. I've always considered the intentional misuse of buzzwords to be a MSMTM phenomenon, but the guys in pajamas sure are quick learners.

They sure are.



Daily Kos: Open Source Media (TM)

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