TRANSITIONAL-GENEALOGISTS-FORUM-L ArchivesArchiver > TRANSITIONAL-GENEALOGISTS-FORUM > 2012-04 > 1334428860
Subject: Re: [TGF] Client querying copyright restriction
Date: Sat, 14 Apr 2012 11:42:04 -0700
Here is a section from the contract I use:
Genealogist will perform this work as an independent contractor in accordance with prevailing standards in the profession. If the parties are unable to agree on any matter arising out of this contract, the issues shall be submitted to the arbitration process of APG. The finding of the arbitrator shall be final, permanent, and binding on both parties.
The research report is a proprietary report compiled solely for the Client. Genealogist retains copyright to the report and the manner in which information has been expressed in it. Client may make limited numbers of personal copies of Genealogist's report as a "fair use" of the copyrighted material. Client use of the facts within the report are entirely at his/her discretion; however, the analysis and opinions expressed in the report remain intellectual property of Genealogist and, when cited or quoted, must cite her as the author and must be quoted precisely. Genealogist retains the right to use the information in the report for publications and lectures unless these specific rights are negotiated between Client and Genealogist. Client specifically grants permission to Genealogist to use the report and related files from this research for application or renewal purposes to the Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG). Information provided by Client shall be held confi
dential, unless authorized in writing or compelled by a court.
----- Original Message -----
Date: Saturday, April 14, 2012 11:09 am
Subject: TRANSITIONAL-GENEALOGISTS-FORUM Digest, Vol 6, Issue 169
> On Apr 14, 2012, at 3:01 AM, wrote:
>> Date: Sat, 14 Apr 2012 03:53:47 +0100
>> From: Caroline Gurney <>
>> In the research agreement which I ask clients to sign I state that I
>> will retain the copyright to my research report. I say that the client
>> may make copies to share privately but may not publish the report
>> without my written permission.
>> A prospective client in the United States has queried this. He writes,
>> "I am a little concerned by your copyright restriction. I don't
>> believe any of the researchers I have dealt with in the past have
>> copyrighted their reports. I am a little unsure why you would feel a
>> need to copyright the report when I am paying you to do this work
>> exclusively for me. I frequently publish excerpts from research
>> reports on web sites to substantiate the information I am posting and
>> I would prefer to not have to deal with copyright restrictions that
>> might prevent me from doing this."
>> I am thinking of responding along these lines:
>> a) APG's "Hiring a Professional" leaflet - which I sent him with the
>> draft research agreement - states, "The agreement should identify who
>> holds the copyright to the written research reports. Your researcher
>> probably will retain that right. This means you cannot publish the
>> report without the researcher?s permission."
>> b) The facts in my report - and the source citations to back those
>> facts up - would not be copyright and he can publish those freely.
>> c) Nor would I object to him quoting a paragraph or two from the
>> report to explain my findings / analysis, providing he attributes it
>> to me - indeed I'd welcome the publicity for my business.
>> d) The copyright restriction is there to protect my intellectual
>> property - the way in which I have conducted my research, the
>> discoveries I have made and how I have structured my analysis and
>> arguments. Without copyright, someone could pass off my work as their
>> own and take the credit for it which rightfully belongs to me. They
>> could also benefit financially from my work, by reselling it in
>> printed or digital form.
>> e) Copyright also protects my professional reputation. Without it,
>> someone could publish my work in a truncated, altered or misleading
>> form, whilst attributing it to me. Others might then judge me to be a
>> poor researcher on the basis of what I had supposedly written.
>> I'd be most grateful for comments and advice - both on the general
>> copyright issue and on how I should reply.
>> Caroline Gurney