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法務費用援助プログラム — RFCの紹介

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This page is a translated version of the page Request for comment/Legal Fees Assistance Program and the translation is 75% complete.
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The following request for comments is closed. Closing Statement by Thehelpfulone: This Request for Comment (RfC) has been open for just over a month during which time it has had input from at least 100 users, including those from communities using languages other than English, representing a number of different sized Foundation projects. In order to increase participation from both those users that this program will and will not directly affect, the RfC has been widely advertised and was translated into major languages before it opened. There have been clarifications made to the policy as a result of this RfC, both on the Legal and Community Advocacy subpage and the FAQs.
There is a clear consensus that the community that participated below does support the implementation of the proposed Legal Fees Assistance Program, in its current form, on the understanding that the legal defence under this program will only be provided for cases where users were acting in their support roles, not for when these users were doing "normal editing". The basis of opposition in this RfC was that "normal" editors should also be entitled to similar levels of legal protection as those in support roles. Whilst consensus makes it apparent that this is not necessary to accept the proposed Legal Fees Assistance Program, it would be helpful for the Foundation to also increase awareness of its existing Defense of Contributors program, which may provide support to said content contributors in some cases. Thehelpfulone 00:13, 10 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]


これは、法務費用援助プログラム案のRFC(Request For Comment:コメント依頼)です。







  • Option 1 (回答項目1):Wikimedia財団は、法務費用援助プログラムを導入すべきである
  • Option 2 (回答項目2):Wikimedia財団は、法務費用援助プログラムを導入すべきでない


  1. 法務費用援助プログラムは、法的脅威に直面している編集者、カメラマン、およびその他の投稿者に対して、事例ごとに適用されるWMF内部方針(投稿者の弁護に記載)を補強するプログラムです。

注記:本コンセプトの様々なバージョンを提案し、検討してくださったグローバル・コミュニティの皆さん、特に各言語のプロジェクトのサポート役ユーザー、英語版ウィキペディアの裁定委員会、エベン・モグレン(Eben Moglen)、カット・ウォルシュ(Kat Walsh)、ジミー(Jimmy)、その他の方々に深く感謝いたします。

Option 1

  • Option 1: The Wikimedia Foundation should implement the Legal Fees Assistance Program

Note: Please allow me to clarify that support of Option 1 is support of the proposed program as written. This is in part because the proposed program has been closely reviewed legally and financially. That said, we are reading all comments, and, if there is a recommended improvement that makes sense, we may incorporate that improvement in the final version presented to the Board. Any changes to the proposed program will be discussed here. Many thanks to all for taking the time to read, discuss, and comment. Geoffbrigham (talk) 23:07, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

  1. FT2 (Talk | email) 22:45, 31 August 2012 (UTC)[reply]
    Qualified and tentative possible, "in principle only" at present. Needs discussion. Comments:
Collapsing discussion for readability and in view of Geoff's comments above. --Philippe (talk) 02:57, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  1. Criteria are too lose. At a minimum, unsorted, these thoughts:
    1. Local resource primacy. Must have made best use of resources both publicly provided, pro bono, or reasonably accessible (Persons with access to local legal resources, should expect to use them)
    2. Significance of case. Cases require a de minimis or else must be such as to set precedent in an area that will affect the project (Cases that are not large sum or precedent-setting such as low courts, may have lower priority)
    3. Behavior of defendant. Do we want a policy that appears to stand behind any user's actions, whether agreeable or condemned? Discretion is in there, but should "user's own conduct" be explicitly stated as an example of something it may depend on?
    4. Impact of assistance if given. Case must be such that 1/ a reasonable chance of difficulty in defence if assistance is not provided, 2/ significantly improved chance of defense if provided (users not needing help don't need us, users needing help but unlikely to greatly benefit in reality would be spending for no gain, sad but not a sensible choice)
    5. Assistance kept to that needed. Assistance may be limited to that required, for example an expert opinion, or supportive testimony, or other evidence upward. (If moving of heavens isn't needed, don't do it; see what can be done for low cost or essentials only as a principle)
    6. Explicit attention to unsustainability potential. Criteria are more than "not a guarantee". The Foundation cannot/should not commit to an open ended bill for costs that may be incurred in any future multiplicity of cases, for example if the legal environment or litigation expectations change. If that happens then clearly WMF will have to find other solutions and mitigations, not accept a role like this, but once committed withdrawal is hard and seen very negatively - so it is by far best not to commit in any way to the apprearance that this is some kind of enduring promise. This "good intention" policy is sustainable only on a reasonable and relatively quite tiny scale. If the scale changes, the expectation expressed and understood by good-faith users may cease to be appropriate, compared to other responses. Users must not be given any illusion as to this position or that this policy is at all likely sustainable (though we hope it may be).
    7. Explicit review and withdrawal - (permanently temporary!). Ideally this policy will have a requirement to be renewed every 1 - 2 years, and may be withdrawn at any of those times or on 3 months notice, in addition. Even that may not deal with the expectation (well founded or not) that "WMF will protect us" because that's how people's minds work. So regardless, that expectation must not be allowed to become other than transient, however enduring we may luckily manage, because permanence has significant harm potential in a context of future sea-change.
    (Later, for discussion): 1/ Should support, in matters that are not very time-urgent, have provision to solicit community views, or for a community to ask WMF to intervene, or is this well intentioned but likely to lead to controversy or distraction from editing (or that it's not needed as a norm, and "if it's urgent it'll get said anyway")? 2/ Conversely on the principle of wide help if able, should there be more leeway for help in the first 24-48 hours if a matter is very urgent, to discuss a case with WMF legal team for a limited period? This could help at a time it's most needed where people may be in shock. 3? Should WMF try to put together some kind of "pro bono" network with a tightly defined remit and perhaps a contribution on some items as its "first line"? (This has huge advantages: it scales, it's more likely local/internationalized, it reduces WMF costs allowing WMF to help a little longer indirectly, and there is more visibility of lowered restrictions. Legally skilled non-editors supportive of Wikimedia might also be very open to contribute on this instead, in view of the light/minimal load , ulterior motive need and value and thereby brought closer). 4/ Is there future scope for synergistic external application for such a network/group, that encompasses this agenda, and for which it might become wider known and gain ints own sources of independent funding, thus widening our ability to help mission agendas and avoiding a fiscal drain? (Ie is there a case that after initial smooth setup, it's worth having at the back of WMF minds, a bigger picture, that seeing this in a wider context of "legal matters directly relevant to our mission", might actually be a better and more funded one too?)
  1. Well. FT2 has done an incredibly impressive job at defining requirements for an ideal program. I can't think of anything to add and would support that program as written. — madman 08:16, 1 September 2012 (UTC) I support the proposed program as written as well, and am sure FT2's ideas will be discussed for possible incorporation into the final draft. — madman 02:41, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  2. I think it is important to formally note down and transparently publish the terms of legal assistance for volunteers, and so I believe this is a good step. This is especially important so that expectations are not too high. FT2 has done a good job working on a draft for criteria of those terms. I think however, that they are somewhat too strict. For example, #2 suggests that the terms exclude low courts. As appeal from a higher court is often the result of a verdict of a lower court, I think lower courts should also be covered. Also, since there is no legally binding agreement, I wonder if a three month period (mentioned in #7) is required for changing these terms. --Tobias talk · contrib 10:02, 1 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  3. I think this is a good idea. Requirements: the legal assistance is required for actions that are forthcoming from Supportrole activities: example a party is starting a lawsuit because of Dataprotection issues against a Checkuser Supporter is fine but if the lawsuit is about "normal" edits created by the Checkuser Supporter, this should not be covered. --Neozoon (talk) 12:28, 1 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
    Just wanted to confirm, that is the intention: "The Legal Fees Assistance Program is intended to help with the costs of a legal defense arising from a support role in the unlikely event that a user should face legal action for their actions in such a role" and it further notes that the person must "Have acted within his or her capacity and parameters as a user in the support role listed above". :) --Maggie Dennis (WMF) (talk) 12:33, 1 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  4. Good idea, support.--Szilas (talk) 13:03, 1 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  5. Support. One of my deeper criticisms of Wikipedia and similar is "risk-shifting", where costs are shifted from the organization onto the individual contributors, typically unpaid and completely unable to effectively deal with legal issues. I'm glad to see the Foundation making any effort to redress this issue. I have some worries about how it could be corrupted in practice. But as proposed it seems highly praiseworthy. -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 13:43, 1 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  6. Support. I've read the proposal, and it makes good sense to me, and I say this as someone who would not be covered by it, because I do not have any of those advanced permissions. I've thought about the concerns expressed in WJBscribe's thoughtful comment in the Option 2 section, below, and I'm actually quite comfortable with not extending the program to regular editors like me. I'm saying that after reading what the proposal says about the limitations of how it applies, and how it is expected to apply only in rare circumstances, and I have trouble justifying extending its provisions to matters of general content editing. I see edits by users almost every day that go against community consensus, and I am not bothered if, on rare occasion, people take responsibility for themselves on matters of content, as opposed to matters of administration. For example, a user on the English Wikipedia who violates that project's policy on biographies of living people seems to me much less entitled to consideration for this kind of assistance than does a user with advanced permissions acting in accordance with their role on administrative matters. --Tryptofish (talk) 18:45, 1 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  7. Support Support I think this is a very good idea. Of course the details need a bit of discussion. --Reinhard Kraasch (talk) 18:56, 1 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  8. Support Support --Joeyline (talk) 19:16, 1 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  9. Support Support Tony (talk) 00:10, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  10. Support Support. I think it is a great move. I tend to disagree with FT2 suggestions. They tend to make things more complex unecessarily since the proposed program makes it clear in the text that decision to fund or not will be "At WMF sole discretion" Anthere (talk) 00:36, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  11. Support Support. I think Maggie's clarification is enough, and covers FT2's points which unnecessarily complicate things. Casliber (talk) 05:25, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  12. Qualified support I'm not sure yet that I agree with all of the details but I support this in principle. Pine 07:53, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  13. Support Support completely in my personal, volunteer, capacity. Nothing is perfect but I think this is an incredibly good policy that serves as the great start for a safety blanket. Hopefully it never gets used but it's good to have around. Jamesofur (talk) 08:13, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  14. I think that every reasonable case should be covered by WMF, not just some of them, depending on significance. Editors are editing for common good and WMF and chapters have responsibility to support them when things go wrong. --Millosh (talk) 11:39, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  15. Support, in my personal capacity. I think it would be nice if we covered every action - but I also recognise that that may cause difficulties with the Foundation's role in relation to our content, and that it would (whether problematic or not) vastly increase the scope and cost of such a programme. In the meantime, before Congress/our donors/delete as applicable pull their thumb out and make a wider programme possible, this is a fantastic starting point. Ironholds (talk) 12:25, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  16. Support Support -- Let's hope this fund stays unused, though! As Wikimedia are a global endeavour, there should be routines as how to implement such legal help "abroad" (wherever that may be). Should local chapters be involved, for example? You can't expect WMF to be familiar with all the niceties of every national legislation. Asav (talk) 12:35, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  17. Support Support -- and I've informed the WMF that I will be willing to donate pro bono legal time in support of this, where I am ethically allowed to do so. Also note that I disagree with FT2's criteria, which over-complicate this. The WMF should simply have discretion whether or not to do this; beyond that the details of implementation ought to be by necessity determined between counsel and client and are no longer the community's concern as a matter of confidentiality. SWATJester Son of the Defender 12:43, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  18. Support. AGK [•] 12:48, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  19. Support Support The proposed policy recognized that WMF is s/w unique in the way that it shares administration of the Wikimedia projects with volunteers as the first actors in most situations and now offers the volunteers support for their good work if legal assistance is needed. I agree with Anthere that the wording now is fine and loads of tweaks are not needed. FloNight (talk) 12:48, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  20. Support Support --Joe Decker (talk) 14:18, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  21. Support Support However, I would recommend that the WMF be willing to extend this, on a discretionary basis, to established, long-term contributors. NW (Talk) 14:48, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  22. Certainly, this has been needed for a long time. Sandstein (talk) 14:54, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  23. Support Support Hope, and plan to never need it. That said, I handle a number of OTRS requests, and I can imagine one going badly, and some enterprising lawyer deciding their client was financially harmed because I didn't act fast enough. I wouldn't expect them to prevail, but they might push for a modest settlement on the assumption I cannot afford the legal fees to defend. The mere existence of the fund might be enough to persuade them not to bother.--Sphilbrick (talk) 15:07, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  24. Support Support may it be needed as rarely as possible. Pundit (talk) 15:35, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  25. Support Support Having this protection in place will not only protect the volunteers who perform these support roles, but as important, will ensure that editors who are thinking of applying for one of these roles aren't deterred by the prospect of potentially having to incur legal fees to defend oneself in a lawsuit—a lawsuit that might be brought in another country or on another continent, where the defendant might have no idea even how to find a lawyer, before even worrying about paying for one. As an attorney myself, I can attest that being named as a defendant in a litigation is stressful for most people, even if the claim lacks merit, and that being well-represented by counsel experienced in the local courts and with the relevant legal issues is enormously reassuring. I share the hope that the proposed Legal Fees Assistance Program would need to be utilized rarely, or even better not at all, but there would be value to having it in place and ready to be called on if and when it is needed. (I am not in agreement with several of FT2's suggestions above, but as needed, those can be addressed on the talkpage or elsewhere after consensus in favor of the proposal hopefully becomes clear.) Newyorkbrad (talk) 19:41, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  26. Support Support Hope it's never needed. I don't think it needs a great raft of rules - rules are useful for a rationing situation, but hopefully this will be as rare as hens' teeth, and "at WMF discretion" is adequate. Concur also with Sphilbrick that it may deter chancers who manage to cobble something up for a small claims court. Elen of the Roads (talk) 20:35, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  27. Support Support If they are acting on behalf of Wiki, they should have wiki support. PumpkinSky (talk) 02:44, 3 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  28. Support Support, largely per the comments made by Newyorkbrad. Steven Zhang (talk) 05:40, 3 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  29. Support Support. I agree with the proposal as written, much the same as Newyorkbrad. As one of the English Wikipedia arbitrators who has worked extensively to try to encourage knowledgeable, well–respected candidates to consider roles in addition to their work as editors, I can say categorically that the concern about potential lawsuits has been a frequently–identified barrier for many Wikipedians. It is good to see that the WMF has elected to extend this program to any advanced permission, including adminship. Risker (talk) 06:21, 3 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  30. Support Support Ched Davis (talk) 07:30, 3 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  31. Support Support the proposal in general (the details of implementation don't need to be decided here, & I am confident they will be reasonable). Andrew Gray (talk) 10:29, 3 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  32. Support Support. I expect the symbolic benefit of such a program to be even higher than the monetary one, because in most cases, legal threats aim to intimidate and are not followed through. These threats will lose some of their power when the potential defendant will potentially be supported by a large organization such as the foundation. --Tinz (talk) 14:16, 3 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  33. Support Support Looks like a good idea, hope it can be implemented soon. In the meantime, I've retained the services of Francis E. Dec, Esquire. Mark Arsten (talk) 14:32, 3 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  34. Support Support Surely. To give, at least, some reassurance to the project's most committed volunteers. Osiris (talk) 17:06, 3 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  35. Support Support Sounds like a good idea. Davewild (talk) 17:31, 3 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  36. Support Support It sucks that we have to have things like en:Wikipedia:Admins willing to make difficult blocks, so there really are at times a chilling effect against acting on WP or "real world" potential legal effect for acting on WP. I don't advocate opening this up to all editors/users (per an oppose comment), but it feels like a useful security blanket for admins and other site managers whose actions support the whole functioning of the systems. It's sad and I hope nobody ever needs this, but it can make us maybe a bit more comfortable taking "difficult" actions. DMacks (talk) 18:19, 3 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  37. Support Support Should be rare, mostly nutcases, and probably easy to dismiss on any number of grounds, but just putting down a deposit to get legal representation to avoid default and file the Motion to Dismiss can be daunting, particularly if someone doesn't live in the jurisdiction where said nutcase files. Montanabw (talk) 19:11, 3 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  38. Support Support Rschen7754 (talk) 20:58, 3 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  39. Support Support Salvio Let's talk about it! 20:59, 3 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  40. Support Support. Regarding NW's comment, I think we could have a place for long-time contributors who are unable or unwilling to become an admin/crat/OTRS volunteer/etc. to request protection under this program. -- King of 01:12, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  41. Support Support per Newyorkbrad. Although I have some sympathy with the views expressed below, allow me to use a metaphor. A small group of people given umbrellas may not be as good as putting up a marquee, but I believe that the people with the brollies are more likely to otherwise suffer a soaking. --Dweller (talk) 11:47, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  42. Support Support I think that this kind of support should be available because it is analogous to the kind of support a brick non-profit would give to volunteers away from keyboard for doing the same kind of volunteering. Blue Rasberry (talk) 13:00, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  43. Support Support Very good Idea. I also think that the proposal rewards the work of very engaged volunteers with a huge amount of responsibilty. However, the significance of a particular case as a necessary condition for legal assistence should be documented publicly. Otherwise we won't create a common understanding of risks or things which are at stake. From a chapter's perspective, we are glad to offer any help, especially insights about specifics of German law, aggressive law firms, prosecution matters etc. --Jan Engelmann (WMDE) (talk) 13:43, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  44. Support -- a lovely and long-overdue thing to spell out. Although, I find the two different policies under which non-staff contributors may receive legal support (defense of contributors and this one, for support roles), confusing; there may be a good reason for this that isn't immediately apparent, but I would work to (gently) merge these over time and come up with a clearer set of guidelines under when Wikimedians should apply for legal help. After all, most 'functionaries' in our world have many roles, and may be targeted for a combination of their actions. --phoebe | talk 13:51, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  45. Support Support largely per Sphilbrick and with similar sentiments. It would be nice (and greatly appreciated) for those who volunteer to take on additional responsibilities within the community to have some peace of mind should they be targeted for their related activities. VernoWhitney (talk) 15:53, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  46. Support Support Also I trust any serious need from a contributor in a "not-support" role would be considered, too, if said contributor acted in good faith for the encyclopedia at large and not for his specific agenda. I agree admin and such are much more likely targets, but still. Esprit Fugace (talk) 16:40, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  47. Support Support good idea. But I think that disbursement of funds should be governed by transparent and written rules. - Bzh-99 (talk) 17:02, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  48. Support Support Sapcal22 (talk) 19:40, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  49. Support Support I think however that unless there are legal reasons behind this, this program should not be a priori limited to support roles, given it can be decided later on a case by case basis whether assistance should be provided or not. — Arkanosis 20:57, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  50. Support Support - My first edit in over a year at any WMF project is to support this excellent proposal. ++Lar: t/c 23:11, 4 September 2012 (UTC) (as a note, FT2, while meaning well, is proposing exceedingly and unnecessarily complex additions, as he often does, and which perhaps might make sense as guidelines but should NOT be made part of the policy per se. "WMF discretion" is sufficient.... ++Lar: t/c 01:02, 5 September 2012 (UTC))[reply]
  51. Support Support quoting Bzh-99. --Vale93b (talk) 23:24, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  52. Support Support Non-obligatory last-resort defense for rare disasters, based on context and empathy. Thumbs up. Quiddity (talk) 00:05, 5 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  53. Support Support, with the caveat given by Bzh-99, above, and as long as this is not limited to elected or appointed positions (which it sounds like it isn't, based on the comments to Jéské Couriano by Maggie Dennis (WMF) in the Option 2 section below). ···日本穣? · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 05:16, 5 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  54. Support Support I'm not part of the user groups affected by the service, but still I wish to express my assent to this insurance proposal for user groups more exposed. Personally, I have already my own lawyer, but he only know the Italian legal code and not the international. So in my opinion it is important to have lawyers who are familiar with international law. Instead, I don't seem right that we should have recourse to the donated funds. The funds would be needed for projects and not to the defense of some groups of users. As far as I concerned, the use of funds must be evaluated case by case.  Raoli  06:25, 5 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  55. Support Support It's a very good idea, considering the risk of some situations. But you should define a little more what you mean with "act within his capacity and parameters as a user in the support role": I think there should be some specific, transparent and extensive definition about this point. --Lucas (talk) 07:06, 5 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  56. Support Support The program would help administrators and other users with a support role, who constantly risk legal troubles. (Le programme aiderait les administrateurs et les autres utilisateurs avec un rôle de soutien, qui risquent constamment des troubles légales. – Il programma aiuterebbe gli amministratori e gli altri utenti con un ruolo di supporto, i quali rischiano costantemente probelemi legali.) Erasmo Barresi (talk) 09:10, 5 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  57. Support Support with the understanding that this does not cover "editing" per se, but does cover "actions". I know the Foundation has done a great deal to insulate admins, etc. from being its "legal" agents for liability purposes (so the Foundation itself doesn't get sued), but they may still be "morally" agents or quasi-agents of the Foundation. --Philosopher Let us reason together. 17:41, 5 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  58. Support Support I'm afraid FT2 has given birth to an instruction creep: almost everything he pointed out, though not sensless at all, is either too restrictive or simply unneeded. As an administrator (actually, i'm using a sockpuppet of the main user due to problems with SUL) on it.wikipedia I am seriously concerned about the legal issues connected with improper reaction to maintenance actions (deletions, bans, etc) and think this program may be a good guarantee for users who act in accordance with rules but get sued. As the proposal already says, assistance is subject to WMF approvation, so if the "attic" believes that the admin or check user or steward has actually exceeded in using his "powers", assistance can be denied simply by citing point three of "Eligibility" paragraph. No need for further instructions/prescriptions. --Vodka Martini (talk) 17:57, 5 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  59. Support Support. Vodka Martini puts my thoughts very well. Fluffernutter (talk) 00:58, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  60. Support Support. Given [1], this is definitely needed. T. Canens@en.wp (talk) 00:59, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  61. Strongest possible support This has been needed for awhile.--TParis (talk)
  62. Support Support. This will reassure the dedicated volunteers that their collaboration is appreciated highly by the foundation, in more than just words. Huji (talk) 02:18, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  63. Support Support. It is great, but needs to discuss in more details.--Cheers! (talk) 02:30, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  64. Support Support and can we add to FAQ how many cases, which would be covered by this proposal, were encountered in the last 11 years? --Jarekt (talk) 02:44, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  65. Support Support In Lusophone Wikipedia, we received repeatedly legal threats, maybe someday someone actually pursuit with a lawsuit. Zorglub (talk) 04:31, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  66. Support Support It's a good proposal. Hindustanilanguage (talk) 05:33, 6 September 2012 (UTC).[reply]
  67. Support Support We should not leave those writing the encyclopedia exposed to intimidation. As mentioned below however IMO this proposal should be expanded to potentially all users edits. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 07:49, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  68. -jkb- 08:47, 6 September 2012 (UTC) - support as wery usefull and necessary[reply]
  69. Support Support This is a good idea that will shield hard-working administrative volunteers from individuals or corporations who just don't understand how wikis work. I don't think it should cover all users, as there is too much potential for outright misuse of the system and requests for help in cases where the WMF is barely involved. JamesA (talk) 08:53, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  70. {support}} - but only when the assistence is related to their support work (sysop who blocked someone and gets sued for it, OTRS volunteer who gets sued because of an answer on a ticket, etc). When a user is just an editor they will be outside this program, I understand, and accept. Edoderoo (talk) 09:23, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  71. Support Support Good idea--Elph (talk) 09:31, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  72. Support Support additionally support for any good faith Wikipedia supportive action that is within Wikipolicy regardless of the users role/privileges. Example would be removal of BLP related content that was questionable and resulted in adverse legal action to the editor. JeepdaySock (talk) 10:36, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  73. Support Support The Internet Brands saga proves that this is necessary. MER-C (talk) 13:41, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  74. Support Support With a possible expansion to all editors. Vinicius Siqueira (talk) 17:28, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  75. Support Support Unfortunately necessary. 17:46, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  76. Support Support but I think the criteria of eligibility should be expanded to all editors. Lechatjaune (talk) 21:49, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  77. Support Support Blurpeace 23:07, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  78. Support Support  Roger Davies talk 07:50, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  79. Strong support Strong support w:Equal_opportunity--MOTOI Kenkichi (talk) 14:09, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
    # Strong support Strong support Is a very good idea, like Vinicius Siqueira I think that it should be extended to all users.--Rosymonterrey (talk) 19:29, 7 September 2012 (UTC) <-(Only Diffence my comment)Defense renew -> googl/dtTZ8(Bashoku kill crying).Unfair opinions example. --MOTOI Kenkichi (talk) 09:49, 8 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  80. Support Support Zu empfehlen wäre es allerdings zumindest allen in der Schweiz tätigen Wikipedianern, dass sie über den Beobachter oder eine andere Institution eine Rechtsschutzversicherung abschliessen (in Kombination mit einem Beobachterabo sehr günstig zu haben), das dürfte in der Schweiz rascher und effizienter schützen als ein Fonds der weltweiten Community. Dennoch kann es nicht schaden, rechtzeitig einen Fonds für solche Fälle zu schaffen, sozusagen eine Kriegskasse! Es gibt ja auch nicht überall die Möglichkeiten, über die wir in der Schweiz verfügen. DidiWeidmann (talk) 19:59, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  81. Support Support this proposal, coming from a smaller project with a higher-risk of legal action against us.
    Several language-versions of Wikinews have a class of users — Reviewers — who actually take editorial responsibility by publishing our content. I would be particularly keen to see those users included. Since I believe Flagged Revisions originated with, and is still in-use on, the German Wikipedia, I'd like to know their thoughts on use of such being interpreted as "Editorial liability" it is, after all, akin to an administrator fully-protecting a page on a contentious version thus taking editorial resposibility for that.
    The worst-case scenario for Wikinews is having to tell London's silk-clad velociraptors to Carter-Fuck off. :P --Brian McNeil / talk 12:07, 8 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  82. Support Support Per obvious reasons. Hurricanefan24 (talk) 15:35, 8 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  83. Support Support Other than the excellent points elucidated above, I do believe that the mere existence of this program will deter a significant number of frivolous and mischiveous individuals from bringing (or threatening to bring) legal action and coercing admin/'crats/stewards/etc into silence. We have to remember that these individuals are voluntarily exposing themselves to such nonsense (of threats of frivolous legal action) and whatever the foundation can do to protect them is welcome action. अभय नातू (talk) 19:16, 8 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  84. Support Support Agathoclea (talk) 20:47, 8 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  85. Support Support --Guerillero 02:55, 9 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  86. Support Support, however WMF should strive to extend the program to cover all editors in the future. XoXo (talk) 07:40, 10 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  87. Support Support. I think blanket coverage of admins/crats/stewards is good, but if another user gets sued, WMF should be willing to use their discretion. -- King of 16:49, 12 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  88. Support Support – Reading a latest report of Signpost, I fully support the idea.--Bill william compton (talk) 12:12, 15 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  89. strong support - I don't expect those legal threats as real incidents, but its good to know to have possible supporting background in case of something like that. --Rax (talk) 22:17, 16 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  90. Support Support good idea. --Wnme (talk) 13:43, 17 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  91. Support Support Given the fact that under law of agency the Foundation most likely already has the duty to indemnify its agents for official actions, whether or not they have a signed contract for this (known in the law as implied agency) it is a good idea to implement this policy, not for the good of the agent, but for the good of the Foundation so as to limit liability for ultra vires acts. -Nard (Hablemonos)(Let's talk) 14:50, 18 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  92. Support Support --Gripweed (talk) 20:11, 20 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  93. Support Support I'm an administrator who has been the target of frivolous legal action, and would have found great solace in the availability of a support program, not only for legal funding but also for assistance in locating the right people - my feeble attempts at locating a supportive and capable IP lawyer using the phone book did not go well. I have also personally spoken recently to Commons editors who refused to contribute third-party content which was legal to contribute (mechanical scans of public domain documents) out of fear of legal retaliation (the third party illegitimately claimed rights to the scans), because they could not afford to defend themselves. The mere existence of this program would make a big difference for our content and our mission, even if it is never deployed. I don't like that it's only limited to administrators, and would want to see it opened up eventually, but I think that's a perfectly reasonable way to try out the program at small scale before expanding it. Dcoetzee (talk) 23:33, 22 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  94. Support Support --Taweethaも (talk) 00:24, 30 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  95. Support Support --Elitre (talk) 22:33, 30 September 2012 (UTC) I waited so long for this, and some folks at WMF know it, that I don't think I have the words right now to comment my strong support vote.[reply]
  96. Support Support I've been a member of other nonprofit organization boards and an officer of other such organizations. Such support is usual and expected in the nonprofit world. This is only what should be expected: Foundation support of its volunteers. Geoff Who, me? 01:53, 8 October 2012 (UTC)[reply]

Option 2

  • Option 2: The Wikimedia Foundation should not implement the Legal Fees Assistance Program
# ~~~~
  1. I don't think users in "support roles" should be offered greater support than contributors in general. Whilst I would encourage greater clarity as to when support might be given for Defense of Contributors in general, I don't think we should be giving special status to administrators, bureaucrats etc. I think this risks looking like we undervalue the editorial contributions of volunteers, which (if made in good faith, sensibly etc) should receive the same support as actions taken by administrators. I worry that this proposal could be divisive and would prefer to see a stronger statement regarding how all contributors might be supported in future (regardless of the manner in which they contribute and whether they have any quasi-official status). WJBscribe (talk) 12:09, 1 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
    Thank you for all of your feedback above and below, which I find quite useful. We added an item to the FAQ, but I see that there is still ongoing concern about why this program is not inclusive of content contribution. If I may, in addition to the FAQ, I would like to add a couple more thoughts for your consideration.

    We have a history of helping in the support of content contributors when appropriate, and that commitment is based in part on principles articulated in Defense of Contributors program. This was one of the first policies that we wrote when I joined the Foundation, which was appropriate given the importance of content contributors. We are now going a step forward: we want a policy that addresses support roles, positions which are not covered by the existing policy. Given the difference in roles, the considerations are necessarily different. For example, freedom of expression or enforceability of free licenses - relevant factors when talking about defending content contributors - are less pertinent factors in deciding whether to help represent an OTRS representative in her or his administrative functions. I recognize that the policies are not the same for these reasons and others, but both require a review of all the circumstances, and the implementation of both falls within the discretion of the Foundation. Both policies also have different financial, legal, resource, and practical considerations: our existing policy addresses millions of content contributors; the proposed policy addresses about 7,500 users in support roles. Geoffbrigham (talk) 11:15, 14 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  2. Sorry, but not this way. Every contributer can be threat with legal actions and get legal troubel. Every contributer should get in this case support by th foundation. It is not to understand why this should be limited to "support roles", especially since the main part of the project is still the writing of an encyclopedia. So the main focus should be on writers and photographers and yes, the "suppoert roles" also should get the legal support. --Julius1990 (talk) 11:13, 2 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  3. As WJBscribe says. While I can understand the intent behind it, it's far more likely that a non-admin would be making such edits - after all, they not only have far less to lose politically, but they also have the advantage of time and numbers. Either make it apply to all editors in good standing or don't bother with it. Jéské Couriano (v^_^v) 04:20, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
    Just to be sure we're clear, this protection plan is not limited to admins; for instance, members of the OTRS team (whether administrators or not) are explicitly covered. The limitation is to the nature of the work being done. Those who are in support roles would not be protected by this program for ordinary editorial behavior, either; it is only for work "within...capacity and parameters as a user in [a] support role". A "check-user" might (for instance) be protected if accused of improper check-user behavior (when that behavior is consistent with policies), but would not be protected for adding content to a biography. --Maggie Dennis (WMF) (talk) 12:15, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
    I'm sure we, the people who opposed this, all get what this is all about. Yea right this is not just for sysop but for special status people such as flagged users, members of OTRS. Same thing! Oh and "The limitation is to the nature of the work being done." --> Sorry to say that no work in WMF is more special than the other. So why should there be a limitation on flagged users or any special members of any kind of groups? Why not for all editors? Normal editors are probably more than 99% of all the users on WMF. So it would A LOT more likely that a normal user would get into this kind of trouble. As the matter of fairness and the more need for something that happen more often. This policy should be FOR ALL!Trongphu (talk) 18:29, 9 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  4. Concur with WJBscribe. ~~EBE123~~ talkContribs 11:11, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  5. I concur with WJBscribe as well. Any legal protection should cover all contributors, not just ones who hold advanced permissions. LegoKontribsTalkM 17:46, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  6. Per WJBscribe. There was a time when being an administrator was seen as "no big deal". Making it something that entitles you to legal protection you wouldn't otherwise have is hardly no big deal. --GRuban (talk) 19:00, 4 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  7. Oppose Oppose, with regret, per WJBscribe, mostly. I do like the idea in concept, and thank the WMF legal team for bringing this forward, but I can't support anything that treats some volunteers as more worthy than others. Craig Franklin (talk) 12:42, 5 September 2012 (UTC).[reply]
  8. Oppose Oppose, per WJBscribe and Craig just above me. I am sorry to see that while I haven't been looking, something very serious happened to the adminship is no big deal policy. odder (talk) 14:34, 5 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  9. I agree with WJBscribe and Craig. Editing on hot topics will expose users to threats, even legal ones. It happened, it happens, it will happen. Then why shoud we protect only flagged users? Why should we pay this assistance for selected users with money donated in order to keep wikipedia running and not to pay lawyers? An user from it.wiki. AndreaFox (talk) 14:55, 5 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  10. Oppose Oppose I'm also in full agreement with WJBscribe if any legal coverage is to be provided it should be granted to any non-anonymous contributor. Panic (talk) 18:12, 5 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  11. Oppose Oppose Volunteers on up to non-WMF employee contributors are protected at least in the USA by the good samaritan principle. Contributors that violate USA law, as contributions are stored at WMF in San Francisco, are subject to prosecution and Public Defenders are available for criminal charges. Civil law suits are another matter entirely. Contributors can be economically, seriously harmed by civil suits. The current law and precedents are such that WMF can be excluded from a civil suit, especially where the defendant may have violated US law or policy in line with that law. Legal help may be needed when a non-WMF employee contributor is sued for statements contributed that are not deleted by conscientious administrators, perhaps because the statements are true but politically unpopular. Edit wars that may result in lawsuits are not a WMF problem (the lawsuits aspect) and WMF funds should not be politically funneled to support one side or the other in such matters. Current WMF legal people probably know when WMF had better help volunteer contributors or not, and the few of them are already being paid. There are special circumstance outside this that may require WMF financial support, but setting aside contingency funds may not be the best answer. Marshallsumter (talk) 18:34, 5 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  12. Pretty much makes us legally liable for their action, which is odd that the legal counsel did not pick that up. Sigh. This is clearly not part of our mission and is a strong reason why so many of the content editors have left. Ottava Rima (talk) 04:07, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  13. Oppose Oppose, per WJBscribe. Worthy programme, but should be for all.--Wehwalt (talk) 22:24, 6 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  14. Oppose Oppose, as WJBscribe, I believe that this proposal makes distinctions among editors. If the proposal extends to all users I would support.--Rosymonterrey (talk) 19:39, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  15. Oppose Oppose, per WJBscribe and GRuban. cmadler (talk) 19:51, 7 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  16. Oppose Oppose Should be for all, I don't think sysops or any higher positions should get any special privilege than a regular user. This is simply not fair! I'm sad to see the statement sysops are no big deal now became vain. Sysops have departed from its original purpose from 2003.Trongphu (talk) 18:07, 9 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  17. Oppose – What if the Sixth Amendment said, "We may or may not provide a person with a public attorney at our own discretion," instead of giving everyone the right to a public attorney? --Michaeldsuarez (talk) 14:21, 10 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  18. I'm happy to accept in good faith that the budget for ordinary contributors would be unchanged. I am also willing to accept that, over and above the Defence of Contributors programme, this support will be limited to defending users in these permissions only "when such users are named in a legal proceeding as a defendant because of their support role on Wikimedia projects." I support that principle.

    What brings me to oppose is the lack of coverage for reviewers under the same circumstances. The WMF has been keen to push flagged revisions and pending changes systems through, not least due to the risks of not having adequate protection for BLPs. It therefore has an obligation to afford a similar level of protection to those who act within policy to make these systems work, given that those users are in turn trying to protect the WMF and its projects. —WFC06:12, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]

  19. Oppose Oppose per WJBscribe. All users editing in good faith and adhering to policy should be covered under any such a program. Rivertorch (talk) 07:06, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  20. Oppose Oppose I disapprove the "Eligibility" list. Administrators should be considered as equal to "ordinary" contributors and treated the same way : either both are eligible to the programme, or neither. My personal preferrence would be a program with a very limited scope (say the functions where the Wikimedia Fundation requires to know the real identity, like Checkusers), and I could accept a program open to all users editing in good faith as a second choice. But I really don't like the level where the limit has been installed. Touriste (talk) 16:57, 11 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  21. Oppose Oppose --Sasakubo1717 (talk) 14:11, 12 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]
  22. Oppose Oppose. In accordance with the Occam's razor, the Foundation shouldn't issue superfluous policies not supported by an established practice. Ivan Pozdeev (talk) 15:06, 29 September 2012 (UTC)[reply]