Why does tar --exclude=".*" creates empty archive

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http://unix.stackexchange.com – Everything I read says that to exclude .svn and .htaccess and other hidden files when creating a tar archive, use the --exclude=".*" pattern. When I try, I get an empty archive. When I leave out the --exclude long option everything gets archived. Here's the full command I'm using: tar -czvf ../_migrate/archive_2012-05-07.tgz --exclude=".*" ./* (HowTos)