[Foundation-l] Fair Use (again)

Robert Scott Horning robert_horning at netzero.net
Wed Jan 31 22:12:08 UTC 2007

teun spaans wrote:

>>I am curious if anybody who is a regular participant on this mailing
>>list has ever come across an equivalent peer to Wikipedia (aka
>>Britannica or a major website like cnn.com) that would use modern art
>>works (I'm defining modern as created by anybody who has died since
>>1924) and publish reproductions of them using fair-use as the only
>>justification for their inclusion?
>Not me. I have three paper encyclopedias, none of them mentions anything on
>the source of photographs.
Encyclopedias sometimes put photo credits on a page that is not 
necessarily adjacent to the article, but on some sort of "credits" page 
that is listed elsewhere.  Encyclopedia Brittanica used to acknowledge 
authorship of its artlces with just the author's initials, and it was 
only in the first volume that even listed the names of the authors.  At 
least this is something to look at before jumping to too much of a 

Also, even if no source was explicitly mentioned, that reference is not 
strictly necessary for a photographic license.

I know this is a tough thing to prove, but one really good example is 
all I'm asking for here.  The rationale for using such images is very 
weak if you can't find a clear example in other published media, proving 
that this is a bleeding edge copyright situation instead of common 
publishing industry practice.  While not perfect for a legal defense, it 
does help if you can show that others who might be peers have done this 
and nobody has cared.

Robert Scott Horning

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