I’m not a “curator” – Marco.org ⇢
I wrote recently about Maria Popova’s promoting some very hard-to-use microsyntax for curation, called Curator’s Code. The skinny? In principle, I’m down with making a distinction between via and h/t (hat tip), but I don’t think that her symbology, ᔥ and ↬, respectively, will catch on: Too hard to use, and they don’t add anything to the well-established via and h/t.
Marco Arment weighs in on the discovery angle:
Marco Arment via Marco.org
I completely disagree with Popova on the value of discovery.
The value of authorship is much more clear. But regardless of how much time it takes to find interesting links every day, I don’t think most intermediaries deserve credit for simply sharing a link to someone else’s work.
Reliably linking to great work is a good way to build an audience for your site. That’s your compensation.
But if another link-blogger posts a link they found from your link-blog, I don’t think they need to credit you. Discovering something doesn’t transfer any ownership to you. Therefore, I don’t think anyone needs to give you credit for showing them the way to something great, since it’s not yours. Some might as a courtesy, but it shouldn’t be considered an obligation.
Every link-blogger has their own standards for when to use a “via” link (or a “hat-tip” — again, I doubt most of us know the difference). I add a “via” if it’s convenient (if I can remember where I found the link) and I probably wouldn’t have seen it from any other sources.
If your standard is never to add a “via” to intermediate linkers, even when I am an intermediate linker, that’s fine with me, too.
And my syntax for adding a “via” link is… a link, often prepended by the word “via”. My readers understand.
The proper place for ethics and codes is in ensuring that a reasonable number of people go to the source instead of just reading your rehash.
Codifying “via” links with confusing symbols is solving the wrong problem.