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Talk:Wikia v ShoutWiki

From the group that combats the Wikia skin, the Anti-Wikia alliance.

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Future deletion of wikis and business model[edit]

I seems like Shoutwiki and Wikia have essentially the same business model. The only difference is that Wikia is the incumbent and large company, while Shoutwiki is fighting for its share of the cake. I honestly believe the people at Shoutwiki want to be nice, and that they will delete wikis at their communities' request for the next 1-2 years. But once Shoutwiki gets into the position Wikia is in right now, business considerations will trump.

The moral is: Keep ownership of your domain name and trademark, and make sure you don't use too many proprietary extensions, and have a fallback plan how to recover your user database. (Ideally, all that should even be owned by a non-profit, not the admins personally.) That said, by all means, let Shoutwiki run the servers. They seem to be hard-working and good server admins. Ownership is about keeping business partners honest, not about controlling them.

--Tjr 16:22, 14 January 2011 (UTC)

I agree but self-hosting a wikia can be very expensive and technically difficult so a wikia-farm may be a good solution for some sites. On the other hand - while your wikia hosts on a farm you are under their control some you may expect some limitations. Take wikia as an example - they place their ad where THEY want, they forbidden the "changes" THEY don`t like such as ad placement etc. AWAMember 16:43, 14 January 2011 (UTC)
i agree Tjr. As I wrote on Tjr's talk page:
RE: http://awa.shoutwiki.com/w/index.php?title=Wikia_v_Shoutwiki&curid=244&diff=3004&oldid=2845
I changed "claims" to "state informally". Lets give them the benefit of the doubt for now. It would be nice to see this in some official page of shotwiki.
I remember so many informal promises of Jim Wales to concerned editors, later broken, some of which I believe are on the Why we left page.
If someone would like this promise on a more formal page, they are welcome to ask, but personally, I don't care if shoutwiki deletes wikis here or not, I almost prefer they keep wikis, as a back up of information.   —Anno1404 (talkcontribs) Admin.svg 16:46, 14 January 2011 (UTC)
Is this "promise" enforcable in any way? That is the key question.
Also, there is nothing to stop you from owning the domain and outsourcing the server work. I'm confident Shoutwiki will return a reasonable price quote if you ask. --Tjr 18:00, 14 January 2011 (UTC)

Monaco skin as an example of shoutwiki's future behavior?[edit]

One current issue which really troubles me is how the monaco skin has not been released by shoutwiki. This is one case where Wikia is MUCH more open then shoutwiki. A couple of shoutwiki's extensions I could not readily find on the internet either. At least Wikia posts all of its skin coding online, albeit Wikia's Monaco skin coding is terribly Wikia centric and useless on any other site without extreme modifications.

It concerns me because it may point to an even stricter Why_we_left#Embrace.2C_extend_and_extinguish Embrace, extend and extinguish policy developing than Wikia may have. In fairness, shoutwiki maybe just inadvertently not posting these extensions and skin modifications.

I will ask Jack Phoenix directly whether shoutwiki plans on releasing their Monaco skin. If the answer is "no" this maybe the first sign of Shoutwiki behaving as bad, or even worse than wikia in the future.   —Anno1404 (talkcontribs) Admin.svg 16:54, 14 January 2011 (UTC)

Let us be honest:
ShoutWiki has the Monaco-like skin, see it on http://monaco.shoutwiki.com/wiki/.
Why should they give the source of it? If you were on SW, would you give the source to everyone? If yes - you will lose you competitive advantage.
And why should they reveal the extensions used only on shoutwiki? AWAMember 17:44, 14 January 2011 (UTC)
Cleaning code up for release is a lot of work. I guess they are only swamped with work due to Wikia's move, and this is not their top priority. --Tjr 18:00, 14 January 2011 (UTC)
They probably just took the Monaco skin from Dantman's port of it -- why would they need to give source that's already available?
Dantman's port does not have most of the features yet that shoutwiki does.
If shoutwiki would have released the Monaco skin, it would have avoided two parties, both Shoutwiki and dantman reverse engineering it. Do I really need to preach the value and merits of open source software on a mediawiki site?   —Anno1404 (talkcontribs) Admin.svg 20:05, 14 January 2011 (UTC)
ANSWER

I was told to refer to this page by wikia staff:

http://www.shoutwiki.com/wiki/ShoutWiki_Hub:Open_source
==Why isn't extension X available?==
If some extension of ours is not available in the official MediaWiki SVN repository, then it is most likely a premium feature. Premium extensions are not open-source due to a variety of reasons.
In some cases, it might be that the extension was not even developed originally by ShoutWiki but a third party rather. It is possible that we deemed the extension good and wanted to get it up and running on our sites but were required not to distribute its source code by the original author or authors.
Likewise, the extension may still be experimental and we are waiting for it to mature before we display its source code.


So the short answer is: no they will not release shoutwiki Monaco.
AWA wrote:
"Why should they give the source of it? If you were on SW, would you give the source to everyone? If yes - you will lose you competitive advantage."
"And why should they reveal the extensions used only on shoutwiki?"
Why should wikia release their coding which is only used on Wikia?
If we were to use this argument NO ONE would have the Monaco skin right now.
Do I really have to explain all the virtues of open source software to an active mediawiki editor? I will if I have too, but I think those benefits are clear.
Three cheers for Wikia and a big strike against Shoutwiki
What is sad is that Wikia releases coding as open source, anyone can use, distribute and share the coding.
Shoutwiki takes that code, and will not release it. (There maybe some legal issues here)
Sure there is a cost factor here for Shoutwiki. But I am sure the development of Monaco cost Wikia much more than the cost of reverse engineering it by Shoutwiki. If Wikia had this attitude:
"Why should they give the source of it? If you were on SW, would you give the source to everyone? If yes - you will lose you competitive advantage."
'"And why should they reveal the extensions used only on shoutwiki?"
We would never have Monaco in the first place, and the extensions and skins we currently have from wikia would be much, much worse.
So in this case, three cheers for Wikia, and a big strike against Shoutwiki, which concerns me.   —Anno1404 (talkcontribs) Admin.svg 20:05, 14 January 2011 (UTC)
If we were to use this argument NO ONE would have the Monaco skin right now.
Once again - Why should wikia release the extensions or modifications of extensions which are used only for Wikia? Extensions - and do not mix it with the Monaco. If you like them - you can stay, if not - you are free to leave. AWAMember 20:15, 14 January 2011 (UTC)
Yep, and thats why I think it is really awesome that Wikia releases all of their extensions and skins open source. Sure, it is in Wikia's best interest to do this, because anyone who can see coding can fix it too. But this openess not only benefits wikia, it benefits everyone.
Closed, secret coding, like Shoutwiki has done, benefits only shoutwiki, and actually can hurt them, because only a small group of editors have access to this code and can improve it.   —Anno1404 (talkcontribs) Admin.svg 20:52, 14 January 2011 (UTC)
Monaco is under the GNU General Public License, as is any MediaWiki skin by necessity. You can simply request the source and they will be obliged to give it to you. I fail to see why this is a controversy at all.
Wikia do not release their extensions open source, they are mainly using the extensions from http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extensions_Matrix.
(To the unregistered contributor). How do you know that Monaco is under GNU GPL?
AWAMember (Talk page, Mail me). 08:14, 15 January 2011 (UTC)
Um, yes they do. Every Wikia extension can be found at their SVN. I found it because I looked. You can find Monaco there too.
Again, the problem with Wikia extension and skins are they are wikia-centric, unintentionally or unintentionally. But at least they are posted on the internet :/   —Anno1404 (talkcontribs) Admin.svg 17:14, 15 January 2011 (UTC)
Once again, you can get Monaco from Shoutwiki by merely requesting the source because it is under the GNU GPL and they will be obligated to give it to you. How is this even a controversy?

Social tools[edit]

Aren't shoutwikis social tools similar to wikias Achievements? --{{SUBST:User:Hockeyben/Sig 3}} 21:26, 1 February 2011 (UTC)