Monday, August 18, 2008

Theme author says Downing Street did not pay him

The other day it was noted that the new Number 10 website had used a Wordpress theme and failed to acknowledge the original theme author and also claimed Crown Copyright on the whole site. The author of the theme Anthony Baggett has left a comment saying:
"Hi guys, I'm the theme author and can't find any record of them paying for the theme. I'm not sure at this point what my options are, but I'm looking into it."
What exactly this means for the New Media Maze MD, Dave who commented on Mike Rouse's blog I do not know. Apparently he is "looking into it". Let's see what has to say about this.


Anonymous said...

Being someone with no life, one of the comments elsewhere caused me to do a quick host lookup on the number 10 site. Which turns out to be a CNAME pointing at a CNAME which according to the RFC's is a very naughty thing indeed and likely to cause things to not work very well.

$ host is an alias for is an alias for

Good to see more evidence of such high quality IT practices within government. ( ignoring the 20 odd xhtml errors ).

Anonymous said...

It's a tough one to call because the author has put a Creative Commons license on the theme and asks for donations but by no means requires them.

As the copyright claim still remains in the CSS file I doubt that you can claim that they have broken the Creative Commons license and therefore do not actually owe the author any fee at all.

Of course morally they should make a donation as a thank you to the author, but that's a different matter entirely.

dizzy said...

I believe that the license in the Networker download is clear about making attrbution back to the source on the site.

Stu said...

DNSpedant I'm not up with IT best practices, but akamai (and edgesuite) are a server load-distribution service who've been around for years. It makes sense for a site expecting as much traffic as Number10 to be using such a service to stop their servers falling over under the weight of traffic. FWIW the FBI have a not dissimilar setup.

As for XHTML errors, apparently we don't need to care about those.

Anonymous said...

This story seems to have legs and is growing in coverage on a daily basis. Only so long before some major outlet puts it up as an example of Downing Street cocking something up yet again.

Brave decision, maybe, but poorly implemented yet again.

Anonymous said...

I've looked into it, and here's the findings: