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Status Update On Version 8.0

Posted By Robert on March 6, 2006

Just a (not so very) quick update on how things are going with the next edition of the CUSWE. I'm about half-way through Outbound Flight, and need to complete The Swarm War, and then I'll pump out Version 8.0 of the encyclopedia. There are only a handful of new sources this time. However, thanks to the Prima Games Guide to "Star Wars Galaxies: Jump to Lightspeed" and the Mando'a glossary on the Hyperspace section of the official site, the encyclopedia now has well over 53,000 entries! A pretty good milestone, wouldn't you agree?

I also wanted to update you on the downloads situation. I've been lax in getting the downloads published over the last few editions, primarily because I just don't have the time to produce them all anymore. My "real life", especially my "real job", have been taking up larger and larger portions of my waking hours, to the point that I don't get much time to spend on putting in new entries, let alone producing all the download files.

On top of this, I've been working with the folks over at the Wookieepedia on trying to reduce (I wish I could say eliminate) the plagiarism of entries from the encyclopedia into the Wookieepedia, without prior consent or any form of credit as to the original source. Remember in high school when one dork in the class would cause trouble, and the teacher would punish the entire class? That's the situation I'm in now... the teacher having to dish out punishment because of the antics of a few people.

I found out about it completely by accident, while doing some retcon on an entry by cross-checking my information at the Wookieepedia. (I do this a lot, and have thanked the Wookieepedia in my Acknowledgements page.) When I found that the entry text I was trying to rework was exactly the same over on the Wookieepedia, I got a bit P.O.'ed. I then tried clicking on the "Random Entry" button on the Wookieepedia navbar, and within about 15 minutes I had found 10 more entries that were direct cut-and-paste jobs. The unfortunate part is that this represented about 40% of the entries I looked at. Not a nice thing to discover, nor is it a good reflection on the folks who do good work on the Wookieepedia...

Between myself and the staff at the Wookieepedia, we have been developing and maintaining a good working relationship. We've defined the parameters of plagiarism as best we can fit it to this information (which isn't ours to begin with... see below), as well as a good solution to the problem, so that entries can be used without getting permission each time. However, wikis are still self-policing honor systems, and people don't necessarily have to abide by the rules. This is especially true with wikis as big as the Wookieepedia, where it's hard to police all the new entries. There continues to be plagiarism over there, even though it has been requested that people cease and desist. The nice part is that the Wookieepedia staff is trying to police it as much (if not more) than I am, in an effort to put a stop to it.

Also note that this isn't a rant about my own site. There are several "Wookieepedians" who think it's OK to cut-and-paste from the official Star Wars Databank and Hyperspace websites, among others.

Thus, I've decided that, for the near future, I'm not going to have the full gamut of downloads available on the website. I'll focus on making the Access database and the PDFs available, but I'm going to curtail the availability of Word, text, and HTML versions, in an effort to curb the enthusiasm of the bad eggs out there. If you want one of these version, please don't hesitate to ask. I just think that making it all generally available is encouraging the bad eggs to continue their poor practices.

I realize that this is not an earth-shattering situation, but it does highlight the need for some netiquette among us Star Wars fans. A quick read-through of the encyclopedia site makes it perfectly clear that I don't mind sharing what I've written for the encyclopedia, as long as you ask permission first before taking anything. There are plenty of fan sites out there that have asked for, and received, permission to copy stuff out of the encyclopedia. I've said all along that the stuff in the encyclopedia is ultimately copyrighted by George Lucas and LucasFilm Limited, and we're only being allowed to play in the universe because we're playing nicely. (This puts a whole new wrench in the Wookieepedia idea, because they claim that all their information is part of the GNU general usage license, after it's been "sufficiently altered from its original form." I'm not going to go there...) However, I've put fifteen-plus years into researching, documenting, and producing The Completely Unofficial Star Wars Encyclopedia, and I can't abide people who simply copy the text verbatim into the Wookieepedia and then claim it as their own. That's just lazy.

Comments? Questions? Concerns? E-mail me and let me know what you're thinking. I've always maintained that reader input is as valuable as the source material itself. Without the continued support and enthusiasm of my readers, I'm lost.


[Completely Unofficial Star Wars Encyclopedia - News Archives]
Status Update On Version 8.0
Posted By Robert on March 6, 2006:
53,000 Entries And Counting...

Version 7.2 Updates
Posted By Robert on December 21, 2005:
What's New For This Edition...

Encyclopedia Updated To Version 7.2
Posted By Robert on December 21, 2005:
New info and new functions!

Inside Scoop On Version 7.2
Posted By Robert on December 17, 2005:
Better Searches On The Way...

Downloads (Mostly) Available For Version 7.1
Posted By Robert on November 23, 2005:
MS Word, Text, and Access Files

Call For Papers - November 2005
Posted By Robert on November 11, 2005:
Any Video Gamers Out There?

Version 7.1 Updates
Posted By Robert on October 13, 2005:
Now With More Than 50,000 Entries!

Database Switch-over Coming...
Posted By Robert on June 9, 2005:
...Moving From Access To SQL

ASP Files Download Is Repaired
Posted By Robert on May 28, 2005:
Loyal Reader Saves The Day...

Version 7.0 Updates
Posted By Robert on May 21, 2005:
The New Edition - Which Contains Information From Revenge of the Sith - Is Available...

It Isn't Star Wars, But...
Posted By Robert on April 4, 2005:
...congratulations to the UNC Tar Heels, 2005 NCAA champs!

More Problems Fixed
Posted By Robert on March 28, 2005:
We found a couple more things...

Database Problems Have Been Resolved
Posted By Robert on March 8, 2005:
Sorry about that password thingy...

Limited Downloads Available
Posted By Robert on February 15, 2005:
If you were looking for them, the downloads are ready...

Classic Entry Listing Now Available
Posted By Robert on February 14, 2005:
Sort of like seeing the non-Special Editions on VHS...

Bob's Interview On "Nitpicking the Saga"...
Posted By Robert on February 2, 2005:
Another interview by the folks at ChronoRadio

Updates For Version 6.2
Posted By Robert on January 3, 2005:
Here's what was added for this edition...

Bob's Interview At Star Wars Fanworks
Posted By Robert on January 1, 2005:
Check out the latest ChronoRadio segment...

Welcome to the Encyclopedia new site!
Posted By Robert on December 30, 2004:
The encyclopedia is also now at Version 6.2...

Version Six News Archive
Posted By Robert on December 30, 2004:
All of the updates from Version Six...

Version Five News Archive
Posted By Robert on December 30, 2004:
All of the updates from Version Five...

Version Four News Archive
Posted By Robert on December 30, 2004:
All of the updates from Version Four...

Version Three News Archive
Posted By Robert on December 30, 2004:
All of the updates from Version Three...

Version Two News Archive
Posted By Robert on December 30, 2004:
All the updates for Version Two...

News Archives for Version One
Posted By Robert on December 29, 2004:
All updates performed during Version One...

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