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Just posted on my blog: http://duncandavidson.com/blog/2012/02/attribution_failure_theory -- A short summary of the important bit:


> This morning, a thought occurred to me. It’s a thought from left field, but stay with me. Maybe the people on the Internet that aren’t giving appropriate credit are just following social norms as established by a lifetime of commonly seen commercial media use. After all, you don’t see credits for creative works used on advertisements. You often don’t see credits in lots of other works that are creative compilations around you. Even where credits appear, such as television shows and movies, they are often incomplete or squished off to the side of the screen on TV so that video of what’s coming up next can be shown.

> Maybe that sets a template. A template of expectations about the right way to do it. And—fully consuming the everything is a remix Kool-Aid here—since we emulate what’s come before, maybe what we are seeing here are people who think they are doing the right thing because it matches the majority of what they’ve seen in the world. All these people who are just using stuff willy-nilly without credit are emulating the visible part of what media has shown them is the right way to do things for a hundred years.
What do you think?
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The cumulative effect of the squeezing/acceleration/tiny-ization of US TV credits can 'teach' people that this stuff is not important...it's just as if they're flashing the listing of side effects, the auto finance terms. Severe penalty for early withdrawal.

I saw a US network show on CTV recently--and at the end: nice music! readable names! Totally different (and enjoyable) experience. I've been told by TV folks that twitchy, attention-distracted audiences don't have the patience for credits (or opens) anymore. I think they're just talking about themselves.
 
Let's see... if AT&T had taken that easy step with the software they licensed from UCB... they wouldn't have had to settle the USL-CSRG lawsuit, and SCO wouldn't have lost that huge plank in their lawsuit against IBM and Novell and Linux, and Apple and Google wouldn't be able to sell hardware using FreeBSD and Linux respectively. Now wait a sec, which side of the argument is that on?
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