The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 17.1066 Thursday, 30 November 2006
Date: Wednesday, 29 Nov 2006 17:16:27 +0000
Subject: 17.1061 Licensing and Public Domain
Comment: Re: SHK 17.1061 Licensing and Public Domain
Michael Best wrote:
>There are, however, some arguments in favour of making scholarly texts
>available in the public domain, and we will certainly be discussing these
>alternatives as the site matures further.
I understand the inherent tension between the effort in preparing the
works on the one hand and making them available to the public domain on
the other. You might want to consider one of the funding sources buying
works into the public domain. Jimmy Wales announced the possibility of
one just last month:
I'm not sure how this would interact with the ISE being a non-profit
organisation, but I'd assume and hope that if one were to bill only for
the time and expertise of the editors it would come within the
Note also that the digital scans of the quartos, first folio, and
sonnets are already in the public domain in the United States, as far as
I understand the following:
"Bridgeman Art Library v. Corel Corp., 36 F.Supp.2d 191
(S.D.N.Y. 1999), was a decision by the United States
District Court for the Southern District of New York,
which ruled that exact photographic copies of public
domain images could not be protected by copyright
because the copies lack originality"
At any rate, as I mentioned in my previous message, even were the ISE
original spelling works to be released to the public domain, I think
it's both polite and good academic practice for people to clearly
reference where they found them; especially given the amount and quality
of the work that's obviously gone into them.
Doing so would also avoid dissuading others from making similar items of
historic value public domain works in the future, of course, so there
are knock-on ramifications to such politeness.
Sean B. Palmer
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