I’ve written before about how Thingiverse is awesome, and it still is… but there’s this discussion going on which I thought I’d mention…
- Designs must represent a real, physical object that can be made.
- Please only upload designs you’ve created or participated closely in creating.
- You may upload open-source/copyleft designs if you provide attribution.
- No pornographic or sexually explicit designs.
- Please don’t upload weapons. The world has plenty of weapons already.
Now those seem reasonable and… WAIT A MINUTE!!! What’s that “Please don’t upload weapons” bit?
And oh how the debate has raged… I think you need a Google account, but you can see some of the discussion on the Thingiverse list. I’m not worried about my highlighting this, because the big guys already mentioned it over on Boing Boing. (Their readership is slightly larger than mine I assume.) Luckily, there are many experts, and each one left a comment!
I’m not going to choose one side or the other, but I just wanted to point out that the magic of Thingiverse isn’t in allowing you to upload and download files, or in the ability to leave comments or type up a description… The magic of Thingiverse is in the community. It’s in the users. From a technology standpoint, I don’t see anything that would prevent another site from doing pretty much the exact same thing.
So here’s my ideas: Weaponiverse
Tip: As of my writing this, weaponiverse.com is still available! Update: weaponiverse.com is live!
Don’t take this as my siding with the anti-weapons people. Or as siding with the weapons people. I’m siding with the DIY people. If Thingiverse isn’t doing what you want (allowing you to publish weapons, or being unclear about it) start your own damn site. Or post the files on your own blog, or put them on USB drives and hand them out. Remember, Thingiverse is run by people. (I assume it’s these two people.) At the end of the day, it’s their site. Just like Facebook is controlled by Facebook, Twitter is controlled by Twitter, etc. Thingiverse is their ball, and they can print it out and take it home if they want to…
But don’t let that stop you. If you want to share files (legally) go for it. That’s what the Internet is for, right?