Re: URIs, deep linking, framing, adapting and related concerns

Hello Larry, others,

Like others, I like a lot what you have written. Some additional 
comments below.

On 2010/12/30 8:39, Larry Masinter wrote:
> I've been trying to catch up on this thread, which I passed over earlier...
> I think the discussion we had at the last TAG conference call led me to the position that
> what we could best do, as the TAG and in the W3C, is establish what the industry
> considers to be the convention....
> Conventionally, if you put up a page with a URL that you can navigate to by
> clicking on "A"-style hrefs, it is expected to be reasonable for someone to
> save such a link, mail it to someone else, or link to it on their web site.
> Conventionally, someone discovering such a link should not expect to check
> any "terms and conditions" to discover if it is OK for them to use it.

I very much agree with the TAG concentrating on documenting conventional 
expectations, based on the architecture and design of Web technology. 
However, I'm somewhat afraid that "Conventionally" could easily be read 
as "assumption unless overwritten". I think you did address that to 
quite some extent in the immediately preceding paragraph, but I think we 
should do whatever we can to make the wording clearer. As an example, 
rewording that paragraph as follows might help:

Someone discovering such a link cannot be expected to check any "terms 
and conditions" on the use of such a link.

> Conventionally, however, someone making a web site that offers images
> for use in its own compound documents (for use in transclusion)  does not
> expect others to point to or cite those resources directly; a resource mounted
> for viewing stand-alone is different from one mounted for viewing only
> within the site's own context.  Perhaps the content needs context,
> does not stand alone, or perhaps it is merely because the cost of mounting
> the image/script/resource/style-sheet is funded by whatever is behind
> the context, and taking the resource out of context does not provide
> a way for cost recovery.

I'd avoid any references to costs and cost recovery, because some people 
or organizations arguing against 'deep linking' (for a@href) also argue 
with costs.

One point I'd make is that in contrast to technologies such as office 
productivity tools (Microsoft Office, Open Office,...) and print-ready 
formats (PS, PDF), the core document format of the Web (i.e. HTML) 
includes images only by reference, without any way of doing so by value. 
Therefore, images available on the Web have to be assumed to be intended 
for transclusion, not to stand alone. As for scripts and styles sheets, 
first of all these don't serve much of a purpose purely on their own, 
and second, there are strong arguments such as consistency and caching, 
for using them by reference rather than by value (in this case, both is 
possible technology-wise).

> Unfortunately, just given a URL itself, one cannot reliably determine whether
> the resource located by the URL was intended for direct viewing by linking
> or use in transclusion, although the content-type of the body might give
> some indications for that.

Yes, the content-type is indeed a very good hint.

> (Note that this writeup does not discuss copyright, legality, rights, or what
> is or isn't infringing, although  the "normal expectation for use" might bear
> on those topics. My feeling is that W3C can and should come up with a
> clear position about what is 'normal expectation for use', but should stay
> away from trying to propose what should or shouldn't be legal in any
> jurisdiction.)


Regards,    Martin.

#-# Martin J. Dürst, Professor, Aoyama Gakuin University

Received on Thursday, 30 December 2010 11:29:38 UTC