Amara: the new "Delete Subtitle Language" function is badly configured, dangerous and in the wrong hands

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Claude Almansi

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Jul 6, 2013, 11:01:26 AM7/6/13
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As I wrote in the Amara help forum in Delete Subtitle Language function: badly configured and in the wrong hands  in http://support.amara.org/support/discussions/topics/25223/ (excerpts):

Since the last upgrade, team owners and admins have the capacity to delete whole sets of subtitles, also made by others, via a Delete Subtitle Language button.
(...)
This is completely wrong. The only persons - according to all copyright laws I know of - who should have this capacity are the authors of the affected subtitles (and the authors of the video - but for them, there already is the Amara DMCA takedown procedure). Team admins/owners should only be empowered to do this when they also happen to be the authors of the affected subtitles.  They might perhaps prevent authors from deleting their work, but exclusively if this is expressely indicated in the team's description - and I am not even sure about that.
(...)
Therefore, Amara staff, please withdraw this Delete Subtitle Language function, and rework it so that only the sole author of the subtitles affected can delete them. And check with a lawyer whether team owners / admins might be empowered to prevent authors from doing 
that.
[Update, July 6, 2013] Add to this that not all team admins / owners are knowledgeable about the consequences of what they do in these roles (various blocks to subtitling have been caused by an admin/owner wrongly configuring the workflow / tasks settings). Combined with the possibility to add to teams existing, already already subtitled video subtitling pages created in Amara by others, there is a definite risk that a not-so-knowledgeable admin / owner might use that Delete Subtitle Language function to delete subtitles that were made before a video subtitling page was added to a team. (...)]
 
So again: Amara staff, please withdraw this Delete Subtitle Language function, and rework it so that only the sole author of the subtitles affected can delete them. 

Unless you do, I'll have to suggest to all members of the Captions Requested and Music Captioning teams to remove the videos they have added to the team, lest existing subtitles get deleted by mistake or whimsy by a team admin/owner. In fact, in each of these teams, there is an admin or owner with that capacity whom it's impossible to know anything about and who never answers messages concerning the teams: in Music Captioning, fernandotakai (admin) and in Captions Requested, nuncho (owner). So far they have only played possum in these teams, but the idea that they might suddenly decide to use this Delete Subtitle Language function is seriously worrying.

And if you have questions or comments about this, please don't write them in a reply here but in a comment to http://support.amara.org/support/discussions/topics/25223/ on the Amara help forum: that's where issues potentially affecting all Amara users must be discussed.

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