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 Post subject: MoreReady's Crash Course on Copyright/Licensing/Citations
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 5:11 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 10, 2008 12:15 am
Posts: 5
Location: Chicago
**DISCLAIMER: I am in no way, shape or form formally trained in legal matters. I am entirely self taught. The following information is not legally binding. If you need advice or help with the problems covered in this post, or others, your best recourse is to seek legal council with an accredited practitioner**

**NOTE: This is very much a work in progress, I'll update it with the information that I think will be the utilized first, and then fill out the rest across the next couple of days. Pardon the Dust**

Recently I've seen the question asked about the proper way to cite another blogger, and how if it was alright to replicate an entire blog post.

In an attempt to answer these questions you'll end up butting up against copyright. Copyright is an every increasingly complicated subject that is constantly being refined to our ever changing world. Below is the general outline of what I'm going to be covering. While I'd recommend you read all of it (I have spent a lot of time trying to write this up for you guys) I've made the sections easy to jump to, so you can get straight to the point that interests you.

(N.B.: I'm going to be focusing on US law, as that is what I'm familiar with, and as most blog hosting services are located in the US, they are also affected by US law.)

I have relied heavily on Circular 92, which can be found here, and the information provided by the Creative Commons.

Contents:
1.0) What is Copyright?
1.1)
2) Licensing
3) Citations
4) Additional resources

1) What is Copyright?
First and foremost US Copyright Law is set out in Title 17 of the United States Code. Congress was granted the right to create this code due to Article I, Section 8 of the United States Constitution, which reads:
Article I, Section 8 as quoted in Circular 92 wrote:
The Congress shall have Power … To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Tımes to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.
Now that we've covered where copyright comes from, lets look at how it applies to you, a blogger.

1.1)

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Last edited by MoreReady on Sat Sep 13, 2008 5:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: MoreReady's Crash Course on Copyright/Licensing/Citations
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 5:11 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 10, 2008 12:15 am
Posts: 5
Location: Chicago
2)

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 Post subject: Re: MoreReady's Crash Course on Copyright/Licensing/Citations
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 5:11 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 10, 2008 12:15 am
Posts: 5
Location: Chicago
3) Citations
If you plan on writing a lot (which I assume you do, as this is a site for bloggers) I recommend you pick up a copy of The Longman Handbook for Writers and Reader. This is an excellent source for grammar, word choice and strategies for research and arguments, not to mention having a detailed section on the four major citation styles. You can pick up the 4th edition (the one I own) used for $7.10 right now on Amazon. I seriously refer to this book for every paper I write. The styles contained in here are a little more formal then what you'll need for your average blogging situation.

For ease of argument I'm going to assume that you want to respond to the ideas put forth in another blogger's post.

First and foremost you will want to link to the original post, for several reasons. This allows your readers to see what you're responding to, as well as letting the original author know that you are responding to their post (assuming their using modern blogging software).

Next you'll want to tell your readers which parts of the post you are responding to. There are a two ways of doing this: direct quote and indirect quote.

A direct quote is when you take the original authors words and put them into your post. For quotes of a sentence to maybe three you would want to encase the quote in quotation marks, to make it obvious that it is not your idea. If the quote is longer you would then put it in blog quotes.

An indirect quote is where you put the author's idea into your own words, either through paraphrasing, or summarizing if it is a big idea. Don't forget to indicate that the idea is not yours, as it is much harder to tell than when you are quoting directly.

In most cases I would recommend you use an indirect quote, as it tends to fit into the flow of your writing better. It also shows that you have a better grasp of the ideas put forth, as you can reformulate the idea into your own words.

I would recommend direct quotes if you have a specific problem with the wording they took, or if you think their wording is incredibly elegant and quite possibly impossible to improve upon.

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