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quoting copyrighted poems
Posted by: Pat Hathaway (
Date: November 09, 2000 10:09AM

Could I quote a copyrighted poem here? Properly attributed to the author, of course. And what's the difference between non-copyrighted and classical poetry? (Uh, that's kind of a joke, I think...)

RE: quoting copyrighted poems
Posted by: Chesil (
Date: November 09, 2000 11:57PM

Copyright is a tough issue. There is a fair use facility that enables quoting for the purpose of critique or education. The extent of protection this affords is fairly unclear (to me at least). Copyright on the internet is a whole lot harder than in print media as I may be in a different country to that of the server on which the breach is evident. There have ben laws enacted in the US to protect the server - provided, of course, that they remove the offending material when notified. On what basis then action would be taken against, say, a Russian breaching copyright using a Geocities server is unclear - none practically I suspect which is why you will find many illegal software sites sitting on Russian servers.

I doubt that helps too much but if you just want to quote to help somebody out, I doubt that would be seen as anything beyond fair use. The owners of this site would be highly unlikely to add anything that is copyright protected to their permanent database though.

The difference between non-copyright and classical? Depends on your definition - I have been following the action between the copyright holder to much of John Clare's poetry (Clare died over 150 years ago) and Simon Kovesi who has published an updated edition. The copyright exists solely as the works in question were not published until long after Clare's death - like 100+ years and so the rule of copyright for a specified time after first publication is held to protect the works. Quite insane, in my view, that work of such antiquity should still be protected by copyright.

But to the point of your joke (?) - classical. like beauty, is surely in the eye of the beholder and what you might consider classical might just be doggerel to me - or vice versa of course!

This probably doesn't help you too much!


RE: quoting copyrighted poems
Posted by: Pat Hathaway (
Date: November 10, 2000 02:07AM

Thanks, Chesil. Your information really did help. I hadn't even considered the internet/other countries complication!

By the way, I've enjoyed your site, and met some old friends in your Favourites.

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