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Sooner or later, nearly every editor of a gem, mineral, or earth science bulletin or website will be faced with the task of learning about copyrights. Your need to become familiar with copyright laws generally arises from one or both of the following circumstances: either the editor of another organization's bulletin asks to reprint information from your bulletin or website, or (possibly more likely) you see an article in an exchange bulletin, website, or other publication that you would like to reprint in your own bulletin.
In the first circumstance, in which another editor asks to use material from your bulletin, you will want to protect your (or your local author's) rights to the material. This is important not only to protect your author's ownership of the material; but to protect the author and your organization from the potential of improper use of your articles.
In the second circumstance, in which you would like to use material from another organization's bulletin or website in your own bulletin or website, it is essential that you respect the copyright terms under which the material is made available to you and your club. Failure to adhere to the terms of another author's or organization's copyright can have serious legal and financial consequences to you and your organization. Remember, too, that copyright protection applies not only to written articles, but to clip art, cartoons, drawings, maps, and photographs as well.
Below, S.C.R.I.B.E. presents several resources that describe the ins and outs of copyrights. And, yes, with the exception of those resources that are in the public domain, S.C.R.I.B.E. has received explicit permission from the authors to provide this information to you.
Copyrights For Bulletin Editors
A Review of United States Copyright Law
Written by Past President of S.C.R.I.B.E., Richard Busch, this document provides a short history of copyright law in the United States and describes the important restrictions imposed upon, and the rights granted to, those who write and use copyrighted information in the United States. The focus is upon editors of amateur organizations such as gem and mineral societies. Practical hints are provided to soothe uncertainty. Please click on the link below to read the document:
Copyright Information Resources
from Barbara Florio Graham
Professional writer, editor, and S.C.R.I.B.E. member and contributor, Barbara Florio Graham, has compiled a very large amount of information regarding copyrights, not only for the United States, but for Canada and the UK as well. Barbara provides insights on copyright issues based upon her personal experiences and also provides links to additional sources of information.
To be taken to Barbara's valuable resource on copyright information, please click the link below:
from the United States Copyright Office
Provided below are three circulars regarding copyrights in the U.S. as supplied by the United States Copyright Office, a branch of the Library of Congress:
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