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Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: May ::
Re: Copyrights
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.1015  Thursday, 3 May 2001

[1]     From:   Jack Heller <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 02 May 2001 15:31:04 +0000 (GMT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1003 Re: Copyrights

[2]     From:   Steve Roth <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 2 May 2001 09:23:41 -0700
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1003 Re: Copyrights


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Jack Heller <
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Date:           Wednesday, 02 May 2001 15:31:04 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: 12.1003 Re: Copyrights
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1003 Re: Copyrights

Copyright laws are complicated, so that one might need to get permission
from the Ezra Pound estate to quote his two line poem "In the Station of
the Metro" while two lines of quotation would certainly be fair use from
Arthur Miller's DEATH OF A SALESMAN. My understanding from the Chicago
Manual of Style and my own publishers is that personal correspondence is
the possession of the originator; thus I requested permission which was
graciously granted from the scholars whose letters I quoted in my recent
book. As the email addresses of all SHAKSPEr members are easily
accessible, I would favor each user to at least send an email to those
whose comments one would like to quote--and with proper acknowledgement
and documentation in any written work. This would not be onerous. And,
as a scholar whose reputation is only becoming established, I'd like for
my comments to be attributed (except for any foolish comments, of
course).

Jack Heller

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Steve Roth <
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Date:           Wednesday, 2 May 2001 09:23:41 -0700
Subject: 12.1003 Re: Copyrights
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1003 Re: Copyrights

>2) I don't want to have get permission to quote SHAKSPER postings, any
>more than I want to get permission to quote from journals or books. Fair
>dealing "for the purposes of criticism or review" already covers this.

As explain below, I don't think it's important what copy is on the site,
but it is an interesting copyright issue.

The legal copy provided also seemed problematic to me because it seemed
to forbid quotations that would be allowed by standard interpretations
of "fair use." (I don't have the orig. post here, and it's not up on the
archives yet.) Would perhaps be better worded to embrace those standard
interpretations, giving the remaining restrictions more authority and
force.

Now of course nobody (that I know of) has defined or tested fair use in
this context. One important test is the percentage of the material that
is reproduced. Would we be talking percentage of a post, a thread, or an
annual archive? Could one reproduce a full post from a thread?

This is in the US. I don't know the fair use guidelines in the UK or
elsewhere. But in general, legal language that embodies established
legal standards is more effective.

This language would probably come into effect in the following
situation: An author (perhaps one of us) quotes one of our posts or
threads at length, quite possibly with credit given--essentially taking
our material and benefiting from it rather than creating his or her own
material. One or more of us objects. The grounds would be copyright
violation, not the language on the site, though the posted language
could give the objection a little more force.

Another scenario: someone decides that the SHAKSPER material is so good
it should be edited into a book (not a bad idea, actually). I think
copyright law would be crystal clear in that case, regardless of what
language is on the site. You can't do it without permission from the
creators.

Perhaps simple instructions to contact the creators for permissions.
Individual authors can decide for themselves whether or not they've
exceeded fair use guidelines and need to seek permissions, just as we do
now.

Steve
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