Some have asked us about the subject of copying and re-distributing our articles.
Any article on any one of the following websites may be freely copied and distributed if the article is written by Robin A. Brace. The websites are, Witness to the Word, UK Apologetics, and Museltof Countercult and Apologetics.
Yes, these articles are copyrighted, but we freely allow their use in order to correct biblical error. But - of course - this is on the understanding that the article is credited to the writer, with the name and URL of one of our web sites included. IT IS UTTERLY FORBIDDEN TO ALTER THE WORDING OF THESE ARTICLES WHICH IS DEEMED A FLAGRANT BREACH OF COPYRIGHT! Neither can your own choice of links be inserted within the article without our express permission; again, this contravenes our copyright because one might assume that any such link has our approval when it does not.
With this proviso, we don't even mind if you want to print 200 copies of an article for your congregation to read!
Another group of articles on our various sites are not written by us, but the articles are very old and are now, as far as we are aware, in the public domain. These would include articles written by people like J.C. Ryle. These may be freely distributed. If you are not sure if that article which you want to copy comes in this category, please e-mail us and we will try to help you.
BUT...the difficulty comes with articles written by current writers!! We do not have the right nor authority to say you can re-distribute these articles. If such an article contains a link to the writer's web site or an e mail address at the article end, you may go ahead and attempt to contact the writer for permission to use the article. Frankly, however, this is sometimes difficult. We have often needed to use a lot of detective work in order to track down the writer of an article which we wanted to use. In a few cases an article has come from a 'dead site' - what do I mean? That refers to a site which has been set up but then abandoned. It may have no e mail address, or it may have a 'dead' e mail address! Many web sites will tell you the last time they were updated. This is often at the bottom of the homepage. If the page has not been updated for a few years with a 'dead e mail address' (your e-mail sender will tell you that your mail was undeliverable), that is a 'dead site.'
In such a case, carefully look for clues from the site itself to see if the webmaster gives any clues as to the copying of site articles. I will only say that - in my experience - writers are mostly only too happy and flattered to have their articles copied and used as long as all credit is given to the writer's name and there is a mention of the web site which the article comes from. I make that comment for what it is worth, but that does not mean, 'Just go ahead and copy,' since I don't have the right to say that.
BUT ANOTHER PROBLEM HAS RECENTLY ARISEN: probably knowing that I am fairly lenient about the use of my own material, a few are also taking articles written by other current writers WHICH WE HAVE BEEN GIVEN SPECIFIC AND EXCLUSIVE PERMISSION TO HOST OR CO-HOST ON OUR WEBSITE! If - as we believe - this has happened without checking with the article writer, there could be a serious breach of copyright involved! Please take this gentle warning seriously! I give it in love and concern.
What if you want to put one of our articles on your own web site? You may go ahead and do so but be sure to give proper credit and to remind your readers that the article is our copyright.
Oh, if you do decide to reproduce one of our articles on your own site, IT IS FORBIDDEN TO ALTER THEM IN ANY WAY, and we would naturally expect you to be fairly scrupulous in avoiding punctuation errors etc. Just one final point, if you do want to use one of our articles on your own site, PLEASE TELL US! We really would be interested to know; we like to know where our various articles are being hosted.
EXCERPTING: Excerpting is TOTALLY FORBIDDEN under international copyright law, however, You may put quotes from any Robin A. Brace article within your own magazine article, book, or web page. You can use 3-4 quotes (obviously encased in quotation marks), as long as you give the full sourcing so that your readers can go to the original source for themselves, if they so wish. In the case of a 200 plus page book, up to ten quotes would be fine.
PHOTOGRAPHS: If we use a photo somewhere, that does not mean you can just go ahead and download it from our site without permission; even so-called "royalty-free" photographs often have a fee to be paid. If your site is non-profit, we would suggest that you search the internet for genuinely free pictures and graphics to use - there are a few of them out there! However, if you want a picture to illustrate a current news item, you will presumably want a recent picture and that usually involves paying somebody a fee - unless you go out and take the photograph yourself.
Robin A. Brace
2001, updated 2008.
'WITNESS TO THE WORD'
MUSELTOF COUNTERCULT AND APOLOGETICS