Has anyone thought about the ethical issues involved in transferring a text from some other media (spoken conversation, print, radio, tv) and turning it into a hypertext?
Hyperlinking a quote manipulates the context of words. For example, here's a quote from a recent Wired News article on biotech patents. First, the quote as it appears in the article itself.
Most usually, we create hyperlinks on the level of raw information. This is the natural blog-type link. Since we usually don't have the benefit of link-types or link meta information (hover boxes are sometimes useful here), we can't describe the nature of a link well on the Web. So most links degrade to the following the basic level of direct informational correlation:
I could hyperlink this same paragraph a few different ways as well. For example, I could decide to be opposed to Monsanto, the company who is trying to control their genetic intellectual property and all products of their intellectual effort.
I could link a million ways, each framing the quote in a different way. When including someone else's words, how should we quote things? At what point can we be accused of taking the words out of context, or of creating a new context? This may not necessarily be bad, but it's good to know when that line has been crossed.
My thought is that basic informational linking to directly related sources within a quote should be ok. I'm not sure beyond that. It will take some time to think through.
Why do I bring this up? I'm going to be working with a lot of direct quotes the next few weeks, and I want to do things as thoughtfully, as ethically as possible.