Thursday, May 06, 2010

READER'S FEEDBACK: Code of Conduct

From: HowlandDavisII

DearMYRTLE,

I read with interest your column about a Genea-Bloggers' Code of Conduct as well as the linked column by Thomas MacEntee.


As a result, I have a question for you. I am not a genea-blogger but I do gather information from various genealogy columns, chapter newsletters, etc., to email an Electronic Report to members of our chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society. Some of the columnists, such as Dick Eastman, have a very clear statement that is to follow any column or information that is copied. I have contacted others asking whether I can reprint columns or parts of columns. However, I occasionally see a column of interest and there is no information about contacting the writer for permission, etc. I use Dick Eastman as an example, saying that the information was copied from a column of [columnist X] and that his columns are found at XXX.YYYYY@ZZZZ.net.


Do you feel that what I have done is adequate or should I not quote the column at all if I cannot contact the writer?


DearHOWLAND,

Ol’ Myrt here cannot think of an occasion where it would be appropriate to quote someone without providing a link to the original location of the material. This permits your readers to view the quoted text in context. Fortunately, Elizabeth Shown Mills’ book Evidence Explained: Citing History Sources from Artifacts to Cyberspace 2nd Edition provides examples.


Contacting the writer will ensure you are not putting your society's publication in jeopardy by using material without authorization.


... and that you are giving credit where credit is due.

Happy family tree climbing!

Myrt :)

DearMYRTLE,

Your friend in genealogy.

Myrt@DearMYRTLE.com

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