Rules are Rules. Sort of.

Chris Betcher, Hackery, Math & Design, Jan 31, 2013
Commentary by Stephen Downes

Maybe it's because I'm Canadian, maybe it's because I understand perfectly the logic behind posting speed limits with the expectation that people will drive 20 or so km faster (depending on he place, the road conditions, the time of day, the risk of moose on the road, etc.) but most of all, I think it's because I understand that when you say "rules are rules" you misunderstand the logic of both rules and the regulation of behaviour. If you are a rules literalist, then you encourage people to follow the letter of the law, often contrary to the spirit of the law. Should I continue to drive 100 kph even if the road is lined with cyclists along one side? The literalist says "but the rules say I can" while the common -sense approach understands that the point of the rule is to drive at a safe speed. The same with copyright notices. There is not a hard and fast rule (contrary to what is implied in this post) that you cannot share something with a copyright logo on it. It used to be, if you kept things non-commercial, you were fine. Now it's a little more grey (and there are guidelines). But if you act as a copyright literalist, you create problems of implementation and, more importantly, comprehension.

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