Doom Wiki talk:Terms of use


Initial revision open for public comment[edit]

The terms of service are scheduled to take effect on May 29 (30 days from the initial posting). This is an adaptation of WikiMedia Foundation's ToS, tailored to the specifics of our site. I don't think there's anything that should be objectionable in here, but the wording of some things may need to be further refined. Feel free to point out mistakes or suggest modifications here. --Quasar (talk) 01:50, 30 April 2014 (UTC)

Professional topics[edit]

Although we may host information that pertains to professional topics, including medical, legal, or financial issues

Um, really? It seems quite unlikely to me that we'd get pages about such issues. At most there could be talk of legal issues by way of copyright, trademark, and other so-called IP law questions... --Gez (talk) 13:02, 30 April 2014 (UTC)

General disclaimer just in case anything on the site can be considered advice of such a nature. The likelihood IS low, but it is better disclaimed IMO. --Quasar (talk) 15:13, 30 April 2014 (UTC)

Wikimedia Foundation[edit]

We hope that no serious disagreements arise involving you, but, in the event there is a dispute, we encourage you to seek resolution through the dispute resolution procedures or mechanisms provided by the Projects or Project editions and the Wikimedia Foundation.

We're not affiliated to Wikimedia Foundation, are we? --Gez (talk) 13:18, 30 April 2014 (UTC)

Fixed. --Quasar (talk) 15:13, 30 April 2014 (UTC)


In no event shall our liability exceed one thousand U.S. dollars (USD 1000.00) in aggregate.

Is that a legal minimum? Because it still seems excessively high for something like the Doom Wiki. --Gez (talk) 13:21, 30 April 2014 (UTC)

IANAL, so, I don't know. It was copied verbatim from the WMF version. If somebody wants to do research on the matter and can find out otherwise, I'll gladly change it. For that matter, I'm not terribly happy about setting the venue to Oklahoma as it means I get to handle the legal complaints personally should they arise :P I don't know what else to state though and it's better than me getting a subpoena for, say, a hearing in New York or California. --Quasar (talk) 15:13, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
I found alternative legalese floating around that sets the liability to minimum regardless of what the legal requirement is, and have replaced the $1000 with that. --Quasar (talk) 21:02, 1 May 2014 (UTC)

Grammatical crap[edit]

Simple stuff first.  :>   Section numbers are in brackets.

  • "reuse" isn't hyphenated in the summary box, but every other instance on the page is hyphenated
  • [00] and offer a framework → and to offer a framework (parallel construction to preceding prepositional phrase)
  • [00] reader, editor, author, or contributor of → reader, editor, author, or contributor to (preposition has to match the nearest subject word, or else put a preposition after each of the four)
  • [0] The community - < . . . > - are the principal means → The community - < . . . > - is the principal means
  • [0] most of which is either → most of which are either
  • [1] other country laws → other countries' laws
  • [4, final list] that of our users → those of our users
  • [6e] Except as consistent → Except as is consistent
  • [9] Manage otherwise → Otherwise manage
  • [10] our services any time → our services at any time
  • [14] the Doom Wiki community → the community (to match sections 4 and 6)
  • [14] agree with → agree to (to match section 00)
  • "Project" vs "Projects" should probably be consistent, though there may well be some lawyerly reason for using the plural when we only have one.  Also, why is it capitalized in some places but not others?

Ryan W (talk) 02:26, 14 May 2014 (UTC)

Applied all except [9]; this is grammatically proper and more concise in its existing form. --Quasar (talk) 19:22, 15 May 2014 (UTC)

Proposed clarifications[edit]

Section numbers in brackets.

  • [00] "Doom Wiki project" → "Doom Wiki project ("the Project")" (we're pre-defining "you" and "us", so might as well do this too)
  • [00] [[Doom Wiki]] → [[Doom Wiki:About]] (if we're talking policy, better to link to an internal page than an "encyclopedia" page, especially if we split them again someday which I think we should)
  • [3b] the part about "medical, legal, financial" is in the preamble almost verbatim; are both really needed?
  • [6h] "wiki" → "[[wiki]]"
  • [7] link to DMCA FAQ specifically, instead of just
  • [8] "disabling" → "counterproductive" (not general enough)

Ryan W (talk) 18:20, 15 May 2014 (UTC)

Applied all except [3b] and [6h]. [3b] is repeated as such in the WMF ToS, I am not second guessing their lawyers. [6h] - this is not a wiki article; linked articles could be construed as officially blessed information by being linked to in this article. Thus such links should be kept to the minimum needed to explain specific points - in particular, links to other official policy pages are required. "wiki" as a term has entered the vernacular and it is not a job of this document to define its meaning for legal purposes. --Quasar (talk) 19:22, 15 May 2014 (UTC)
Fair enough.  In fact I possibly contradicted myself between that and the second bullet, whose link may or may not meet that same standard of "officially blessed" (more so than, say, the description on Entryway, which we carefully monitor).    Ryan W (talk) 20:30, 15 May 2014 (UTC)

Licensing points[edit]

Last post from me.  Section numbers in brackets.

  • [6] At some point (or maybe in the jurisdiction section) we could remind people that they are subject to the laws of their own country or locality as well as what is outlined here, and that it is quite conceivable to do something fully compliant with this page yet putting them personally at risk.  I'm thinking, for example, of German users taking screen shots of swastikas, or people uploading perfectly valid fair use images from a country where fair use legislation does not exist.
  • [6] Might want to point out that attribution via a pseudonym or IP address is normal and acceptable (I remembered this being covered in the license itself, but apparently not).
  • [7] "to the extent such requests are within the law."  — this implies that admins are qualified to decide such, or that we have defined a legally sound procedure which the admins have agreed to follow (hah).  "appear to be within the law" might be more accurate.  (The general tone of this section seems needlessly confrontational, but I realize it was copied from the WMF version.)
  • [7] "you can post a notice explaining your copyright concerns."  — this is copied from the WMF version, but then omits the part explaining where to post.  Arguably someone might notice it anywhere, given our aggregate editing rate; then again they might not.  Central Processing has been in the same place for 9+ years and is heavily watched.

Ryan W (talk) 19:27, 26 May 2014 (UTC)

I don't know why but I never saw this come through Recent changes and I wish it'd been posted more than 3 days before the ToS was due to come into effect, since now we must offer a significant period of time for review for any subsequent changes. Your first point is already addressed where it says "other countries may seek to enforce their laws on you," I don't believe anything else is required to that effect. Attribution is covered by our Copyrights policy and the fact we use CC BY-SA which outlines what types of attribution are appropriate for us. I am not a lawyer but I know what the DMCA says and for example a take-down notice based on the fact you don't like what somebody is saying about you can be completely ignored legally. There must be a valid copyright claim. If I HAD to, I would get a lawyer's advice before deciding to ignore a DMCA notice. However, your final point is valid and it would be best if the ToS referred to a fixed location for such reports. However to make that change we'll now have to go through the ToS approval/notice process again and this is too short a turn-around. We'll have to wait until enough issues accumulate to warrant an update, or, a certain comfortable amount of time has passed. --Quasar (talk) 17:34, 2 June 2014 (UTC)
My fault really — the questions needing the most thought should have been asked soonest.  Re your final point, obviously 6 more months isn't a huge deal, if an actual incident is as unlikely as people keep claiming.  In the meantime, if there were a report, it wouldn't vanish, just take longer to be noticed.    Ryan W (talk) 00:12, 4 June 2014 (UTC)
I was thinking something closer to a couple weeks :P I just don't want to put up another site notice this quickly ;) --Quasar (talk) 05:03, 4 June 2014 (UTC)

Pending changes to the Terms of Use, 15 June 2015[edit]

Hereby please be notifed that, as hosted by MancuNET, will be adjusting its Terms of Use for this webpage and its related resources in the following manners, effective as of 18 June 2015 at 9:00 PM CDT. Continued use of after that time will indicate your acceptance of these modified terms:

  • All instances of "Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported" or "CC BY-SA 3.0" shall be adjusted to refer to the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 license, as approved through community processes and as legally allowed under the terms of the current license. All textual contributions made to after 18 June 2015 at 9:00 PM CDT shall be available only under the terms of the CC BY-SA 4.0 or a compatible license.
  • The Terms of Use shall be adjusted to identify Doom Wiki:Central Processing as the canonical posting point for any legal complaint.

--Quasar (talk) 20:18, 15 June 2015 (CDT)

Yay!  But does the date stamp at the bottom need to be updated?    Ryan W (talk) 13:57, 25 June 2015 (CDT)
Fixed :D --Quasar (talk) 16:42, 25 June 2015 (CDT)

Suggested amendment for trademark infringement indemnification[edit]

Section 1 should be amended via addition of an item c. which re-iterates the following text adapted from our disclaimer within the context of this legal document:

  • Unofficial: This project is not affiliated with id Software, Raven Software, ZeniMax Media, Bethesda SoftWorks, or any other commercial software developer or publisher. Use of trademarked names, logos, and other protected intellectual property is strictly nominative and non-commercial, and is solely for the purpose of providing analysis, critical commentary, and news reporting on the identified products and associated fan community activities. Use of such trademarks does not imply any endorsement of this project by any of these organizations or their employees, past or present.

Provided minimal positive feedback, I will issue the required three-day notice for administrative and legal changes to the terms of use. --Quasar (talk) 13:40, 2 December 2016 (CST)

Seems fine to me. --Gez (talk) 15:48, 2 December 2016 (CST)
Makes sense.  I'll opine that it's disingenuous to describe anything here as "news reporting", with due respect to your and others' hard work regarding new releases (and I now understand the purpose of including the term [1], which I didn't yesterday).
ObTangent: a thread above says Wikipedia links should be minimized, but we link to one of the most controversial topics in the Wikipedia community, "free content".  Maybe [2] instead, as a non-wiki primary reference?    Ryan W (usually gone) 10:01, 3 December 2016 (CST)
This is the actual reason I included the part about news. I'm going to defer from including any other changes for the time being just to make this quick and simple. --Quasar (talk) 18:15, 3 December 2016 (CST)

Proposed low-priority improvement[edit]

Per this remark  :>  the attribution link at the bottom should use https.    Ryan W (usually gone) 02:14, 24 June 2017 (CDT)

Slightly more important idea: also include date accessed, as that document also changes over time (with huge revisions planned for the future). Ryan W (living fossil) 06:43, 17 August 2019 (CDT)

Need for adjustments due to insane new state laws[edit]

A series of state laws is slowly being passed in the United States which threatens to force websites (sometimes defined as having 75 million "subscribers" or more, but other times without limitation or restriction) to host political views, religious beliefs, and even hate speech of a racist, homophobic, transphobic, etc. nature posted by their users. As Oklahoma is one such state (its bill is currently stalled in committee but could move at any moment without warning), I am suggesting the following adjustments:

  • Reference to governance under the law of any particular state shall be stricken, substituting the following principle: Users agree that interaction with the Project site is intrinsically a matter of interstate commerce, as all such transactions take place over the Internet, and thus proper regulation of all such interactions, when and where applicable, is in accordance with United States federal law. Users recognize the constitutional right of the Project as a private non-governmental entity to be protected from compelled speech, as established in West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette and Manhattan Community Access Corp. v. Halleck.
  • Proper venue for any action will be moved from Oklahoma County, Oklahoma, to Cook County, Illinois.
  • Users should agree that contributions to the Doom Wiki do not qualify as speech reflecting personal ideas of a political or religious nature.
  • Users should agree that contributions to the Doom Wiki are not part of any political campaign or statement of a political official and do not qualify for any special protections ascribed to such.
  • By submitting any contribution, users agree to waive any special rights of protection ascribed to political or religious speech by any state law should they be relevant despite the above agreements and agree that the Project is not liable for any damages under such laws.

--Quasar (talk) 05:06, 25 May 2021 (CDT)

No objection to the wording.  I've run out of vocabulary for the upstream issue, but webmasters in other countries must find it bewildering how many risk assessments are forced on small sites, just to keep operating.  HTH / KUTGW, Ryan W (living fossil) 13:29, 27 May 2021 (CDT)
I have pushed the sum of changes to Doom Wiki:Terms of use/Proposed changes, including an additional use of the term "not-for-profit" because of the European Union's Article 17. --Quasar (talk) 20:28, 31 July 2021 (CDT)
They look sensible to my IANAL eyes. --Xymph (talk) 02:02, 3 August 2021 (CDT)