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Passions in Poetry

Rules for Writing

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Sven
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0 posted 06-13-2002 04:45 PM       View Profile for Sven   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Sven

Paste these somewhere close to where you do your writing. . .


1. Verbs HAS to agree with their subjects.

2. Prepositions are not words to end sentences with.

3. And don't start a sentence with a conjunction.

4. It is wrong to ever split an infinitive.

5. Avoid cliches like the plague. (They're old hat)

6. Also, always avoid annoying alliteration.

7. Be more or less specific.

8. Parenthetical remarks (however relevant) are (usually) unnecessary.

9. Also too, never, ever use repetitive redundancies.

10. No sentence fragments.

11. Contractions aren't necessary and shouldn't be used.

12. Foreign words and phrases are not apropos.

13. Do not be redundant; do not use more words than necessary; it's highly superfluous.

14. One should NEVER generalize.

15. Comparisons are as bad as cliches.

16. Don't use no double negatives.

17. Eschew ampersands & abbreviations, etc.

18. One-word sentences? Eliminate.

19. Analogies in writing are like feathers on a snake.

20. The passive voice is to be ignored.

21. Eliminate commas, that are, not necessary. Parenthetical words however should be enclosed in commas.

22. Never use a big word when a diminutive one would suffice.

23. Kill all exclamation points!!!

24. Use words correctly, irregardless of how others use them.

25. Understatement is always the absolute best way to put forth earth-shaking ideas.

26. Use the apostrophe in it's proper place and omit it when its not needed.

27. Eliminate quotations. As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "I hate quotations. Tell me what you know."

28. If you've heard it once, you've heard it a thousand times: Resist hyperbole; not one writer in a million can use it correctly.

29. Puns are for children, not groan readers.

30. Go around the barn at high noon to avoid colloquialisms.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------




To the world, you may only be one person. But to one person, you may be the world.
Irie
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since 12-01-1999
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Washington State


1 posted 06-13-2002 04:54 PM       View Profile for Irie   Email Irie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Irie



~Sheri

"The things that come to those that wait may be the things
left by those who got there first"


Phaedrus
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since 01-26-2002
Posts 280


2 posted 06-13-2002 05:21 PM       View Profile for Phaedrus   Email Phaedrus   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Phaedrus


Hereís the full list for those interested:
http://www.creativeteachingsite.com/humorgrammar.htm

Thanks for the chance to read and reply
catalinamoon
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3 posted 06-13-2002 08:45 PM       View Profile for catalinamoon   Email catalinamoon   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit catalinamoon's Home Page   View IP for catalinamoon

LOL I better stop writing(right now)

Sandra
Kit McCallum
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4 posted 06-14-2002 04:50 AM       View Profile for Kit McCallum   Email Kit McCallum   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Kit McCallum

ROFL, this was great ... thanks for the grins Sven!
Titia Geertman
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since 05-07-2001
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5 posted 06-14-2002 02:06 PM       View Profile for Titia Geertman   Email Titia Geertman   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Titia Geertman's Home Page   View IP for Titia Geertman


er...er....could you please state that in plain language? Dutch for instance

Will take a whole night to translate LOL

I'll take your word for it Sven

Titia

A rose is a rose is a rose...I guess...
Check out my new website: lookheretitia.fcpages.com (I didn't 'link' this, so it won't take too much space).I

Severn
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6 posted 06-14-2002 07:55 PM       View Profile for Severn   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Severn

ROTF..

Phaedrus
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7 posted 06-15-2002 03:47 PM       View Profile for Phaedrus   Email Phaedrus   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Phaedrus


Did you write these Sven or were they written by someone else?

I only ask because the statement at the end of the link I posted seems to attribute them to at least one other person. If you did write them it may be worthwhile contacting the owner of the site, who seems to be claiming ownership of them, to assert your claim of copyright.

Perhaps Ron could help if a simple request isnít sufficient, I believe he has interceded before in similar situations where the work of PIP members was used without permission.

Thanks for the chance to read and reply.
Poet deVine
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8 posted 06-15-2002 05:59 PM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

I've closed this thread until I hear from Sven regarding this issue.
Sven
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9 posted 06-17-2002 03:52 PM       View Profile for Sven   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Sven

hello. . .

this was simply a forwarded e-mail that I received from a friend of mine that I wanted to share with everyone here. . .

I claimed (and do not claim) no authorship of this (as there usually isn't any kind of author to name for things of this nature). . . but, it's usually understood that these kinds of things aren't written by the people who post them. . .

so, please add the following to this list. . .

NOTE:Some of the rules were originally part of or based on work by William Safire in his book Fumble-Rules. One web site suggests that some of them may also have appeared in a New York Times Magazine article by Mr. Safire, in which case credit for some of these rules goes to Mr. William Safire.

thank you for your time. . .

-------------------------------------------------------------------

To the world, you may only be one person. But to one person, you may be the world.

[This message has been edited by Sven (06-17-2002 03:55 PM).]

Ron
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10 posted 06-17-2002 04:57 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
as there usually isn't any kind of author to name for things of this nature


I don't want to pick on John, because he's certainly not the first to do this, he likely won't be the last, and this is one of the least offensive examples of this practice that I've seen yet. Still, the all-too-common justification cited is just irritating enough to prevent me from keeping my mouth shut. I know I'm fighting a useless battle, I know I'm not going to stop it, but I'll feel better if I at least try.

Writing does not happen in the absence of a writer.

If you receive something in your mail box that fails to give credit to the writer, it just means someone, in what was probably a very long chain of someone's, got lazy or careless or both.

Don't perpetuate it! If we all refuse to forward or otherwise share unattributed work, this unfair practice would, if not die, at least sicken and weaken instead of continuing to grow stronger every year.

And if it's just so good you have to share it with someone?

Then reverse the laziness that started the chain and do a little research. Enter any one of the hilarious writing rules above into Google and you'll find them plastered all over the Internet. A few sites even have the courtesy to mention the author's name, enough sites that no one would have any excuse for not being able to find and credit Safire properly. If what you want to share is really that good, you can be fairly certain it's out on the Internet more than a few times. Finding the author usually requires only a very little time and effort.

And, of course, the desire to try. I think the biggest problem with this practice is that no one seems to see anything wrong with it. It's like breathing. Everyone does it, so it must be okay. Except that it's really more like belching. Everyone does it, and I really wish they'd stop.

Okay, soapbox put away for today. Again, I'm not picking on John, who is really doing little more than following the rest of the digital world. I just think, and hope, that maybe together we can change that prevalent attitude?


Brad
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11 posted 06-17-2002 07:13 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

No one sees anything wrong with it because it is like breathing. C'mon Ron, stop pretending that current ideas on authorship even existed a few hundred years ago.

The way you talk sometimes, you'd think Shakey would have to pay royalties in 1595.

I've read Sven's post, I've read it before, it always seems slightly different. At what point is the 'author' authors? At what point can you accept that authors don't always want credit or money or follow the same rules you do?

The satisfaction can come from the writing and nothing else.

If this can be traced to a specific author and he or she sues, I hope it is thrown out of court.  
Poet deVine
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12 posted 06-17-2002 07:42 PM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

I once received an email with an attached humorous poem. No author's name was attached. There were about 25 people on the list of recipients.

The poem was 'Bob's Big Boy' and I had written it.


I replied to all 25 of those people that this was my work!! Do you think even ONE of them replied? Nope. No one cared who write it - they all just passed it around like a shared bottle of booze....and though I never got paid for that piece, I did want credit for it!

[This message has been edited by Poet deVine (06-17-2002 07:43 PM).]

Brad
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13 posted 06-17-2002 08:12 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Should you pay royalities to that not-so-forgotten chain restaurant?
Ron
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14 posted 06-17-2002 10:09 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

You can't copyright the name of a restaurant, Brad. That would fall under trademark law; same ballpark, but a very different game.

quote:
The satisfaction can come from the writing and nothing else.

It can, indeed. Is it safe to assume, then, that's why all people write?

If you're not willing to give a writer credit for what they create, can you realistically expect them to accept responsibility for what they create? Aren't they two sides of the same coin?

It's not about money. It's not even about the law or, heaven forbid, right and wrong. It's about simple respect. Respect not just for the person, but also for the very act of creation. If there is no credit, no ownership, no recompense, no responsibility or accolades - then this thing we do is cheapened.

Shakespeare may not have received royalties, but he presumably did make a living. With words. I suspect what he wrote would have been just as memorable, just as perfect, even if he never saw a dime for it. Even if never got credit for it.

But how much would he have written? Digging ditches for a living doesn't leave a lot of time or energy, even for a genius.

If you set aside the law, if you set aside concepts of right and wrong, if you don't fear repercussions, the only reason to ever pay anyone for anything, whether intellectual or real, is because you value it enough to want more. And you know what? That's really not a bad reason at all.

If we don't respect and protect our writers we're going to get exactly what we deserve. Mediocre writing.
Phaedrus
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15 posted 06-18-2002 01:49 AM       View Profile for Phaedrus   Email Phaedrus   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Phaedrus


If the original quotes are the work of another author why havenít they been removed?
Brad
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Jejudo, South Korea


16 posted 06-18-2002 01:56 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Ha. I knew I should have reworded that last quip (Hey, I was in a hurry). But my point, of course, was a reductio ad absurdum argument which is exactly what I see here.

It's not that Shakey should have received royalties but that he should pay them for all that borrowing he did (How dare he take up and expand noble Chrisopher Marlowe's innovation -- blank verse --?). I'm not questioning the need for certain copyright rules, but I'm questioning the need to apply them in this case. As I recall this was posted in the Lounge a few years back, it's been posted at the Scroll, and it's been posted on a few writing sites here and there. It's a cute little trick, but your assuming a single author, a single idea, a single moment of pure inspiration, of pure originality, and I question that Romantic assumption.

Really, all I see is an expansion of a common joke among English majors (and I'm sure it started a long before my time in school) and wouldn't be surprised if at least some of these versions weren't in fact cases of parallel evolution.

So who is supposed to get credit? The person who compiled it, the person who first said, "Cliches should be avoided like the plague", or everybody who ever took the piss out of a grammar primer?

I don't know, but the modern Romantic assumptions of authorship (I admit Sharon's situation is different) simply don't apply in this case.

Creation is not created in a vacuum, and as long as people are wedded to the notion that originality is spontaneous and not the result of borrowing, using models, stealing, reweaving, and steeping yourself in the tradition, the result is exactly the same: More people demanding that the same thoughts, the same words, be seen as their words, their thoughts and therefore orginal.

That's what creates mediocre writing and quibbling over these things is a symptom of that mistaken assumption.

Brad

PS Feel free to slam me on this one (I didn't check), but in a technical sense, and for at least part of his life, wasn't Will paid for being a part of the Queen's Men (Later, the King's Men), not for his writing? That is, he was paid as a member of a drama troup.

The economics of the sixteenth century were somewhat different than they are today.

Maybe.
Brad
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17 posted 06-18-2002 02:31 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Just read that Safire is given credit (Note to self: follow your own advice and read the whole thread before commenting ).

Okay, but I'm still not sure if you can call him the originator or the compiler. Nevertheless, I still think my point stands, I'd even go so far as to argue that Safire might actually agree with me.

Maybe not.  
Phaedrus
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since 01-26-2002
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18 posted 06-18-2002 02:37 AM       View Profile for Phaedrus   Email Phaedrus   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Phaedrus

Brad

Does that mean we can take sections of other peopleís work and quote them without credit?

Or is it ok to use sections as long as we put the authorsí name at the bottom? Does that include a whole poem from an anthology?

We attribute passages and sections of peopleís work giving credit to the original author, poems judged to be complete entities in their own right should not be used in full. I believe that the quotes in question are individual entities in the same way that poems are, someone somewhere thought about them and wrote them. The assumption that the author wonít mind if theyíre posted at a poetry site is a little hard to swallow if you take into account the fact that the author of at least some of them wrote them into a book.

If I post a work (a poem for instance), that is not my original work, in any forum on this site it will be removed, so why is this post any different?

[This message has been edited by Phaedrus (06-18-2002 02:38 AM).]

Brad
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19 posted 06-18-2002 05:07 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Because I see these sentences in the same light as a joke or an urban legend, not as a poem or quoted text.



Ron
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20 posted 06-18-2002 11:23 AM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

You also can't copyright blank verse, Brad. That one falls under patent law and isn't even in the same ballpark any more.

Shakespeare is probably less than a perfect example for either your use or mine, especially if we need to agree on details. Remember, history can't even unequivocally prove his existence. While we know "a" man by that name lived at the proper time and place, many still question whether he was the author of the plays we attribute to him. Personally, I don't agree with the skeptics, but neither can I prove them wrong. If the economy of the Sixteenth century was different than ours today, so too were concepts of record-keeping.

Nonetheless, if we ignore details, I think Shakespeare serves to prove both our points. Mine is simple. Writers and artists of all kind require support, either from the aristocracy/government or the plebeians/public, if they are to be productive. How many of our Members dream about being able to make a decent living from their writing? Not necessarily so they can get rich, but so they can devote themselves full time to writing? If we as a society value what art gives us, if we want it to continue and proliferate, me MUST be willing to pay for it. Take away ownership and this thing we do is harmed, perhaps unto death. Communism failed, remember?

Your point is equally true, but I think far less simple. Yes, Shakespeare borrowed from those who preceded him, and obviously so did Safire. As you say, creation does not exist in a vacuum, and every artist builds on the past. It's impossible to do otherwise. But at what point is a creation original and at what point does it become merely derivative? I don't think that question has any easy answers. Was "West Side Story" a brilliant musical? Or a ripped-off storyline? Did Safire simply compile? Or did he take a few existing aphorisms, add substantially to them while still borrowing the original idea, and perhaps create something greater than the individual parts?

I don't know. Nor am I sure it really matters. Whether you want to shower Safire with accolades for something original or impugn him for too-heavy borrowing, both require that his name remain attached to what he did. Credit and responsibility can't be easily separated. With proper attribution, each person and ultimately the marketplace can give the author exactly what he deserves.

Phaedrus, the Fair Use Doctrine (at least in the US) is less than simple. A poem from a poetry anthology is clearly seen as a literary entity and can not be quoted in its entirety. It can't even be quoted substantially, although the courts have never quite gotten around to actually defining what that means. Each instance is a new battle. I think it's far less clear whether each item in an ordered list exists as a separate entity, and I'm not even sure if the greater part of an ordered list from a full book-length work becomes "too substantial" to quote. From a technical standpoint, then, this post hasn't been removed because it arguably falls within Fair Use (at least as long as credit is given, preferably with a link such as you provided).

But technicalities aside, the REAL reason the post wasn't removed is because I essentially agree with Brad. If you read just a little of what Pulitzer-winner William Safire has written, I think it's fairly clear he probably wouldn't claim authorship of this list, but would admit his role was one of compilation. It's admittedly a judgement call, one I'm not even qualified to make, but still one I'm confident is valid. Safire, I'm sure, would get a huge belly laugh out of my concerns. And I STILL think he deserves to have his name attached to what he has done.


Phaedrus
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21 posted 06-18-2002 03:07 PM       View Profile for Phaedrus   Email Phaedrus   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Phaedrus


Ron

I think you may have misinterpreted ĎBlank Formsí to mean blank verse, the forms in question are the ones you fill in rather than a poetry format. Blank verse is covered by copyright at least under UK law and as far as I have been able to ascertain American law too, but donít quote me on that American copyright law isnít my strongest subject.  

With respect to lists, I agree that simple alphabetical lists cannot be covered but more complex constructed lists (which this seems to be) are acceptable. Even the individual Ďrulesí from the above list can be construed as protected by dint of their artistic and original content.

If you accept the above material is protected under copyright law all you are left with is whether the author would object to it being posted here. To be truthful Iíd have to agree with you, I think he probably wouldnít mind but at best thatís a rather large assumption while at worst itís doing almost exactly what the somebody, sometime did when he/she decided not to include the authors name.

Copyright is a complicated issue, fair use blurs the issues even further but in this case Iím convinced that the original authors work is being used without his/her knowledge or permission. I know that as a writer I wouldnít like it to happen to me which prompts me to open my big mouth when I see it happening to someone else.

At the end of the day this is your site and Iím only a guest visiting it, so if you say it stays it stays, Iíll quit whining and move on to the next topic.

http://law.freeadvice.com/intellectual_property/copyright_law/orginal_copyright.htm


Sven
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22 posted 06-18-2002 04:51 PM       View Profile for Sven   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Sven

well. . . this is all very interesting. . . yes. . . very interesting. . .

it would seem that I have opened (without trying, of course) a can of worms. . .

so, now what?  does this mean that anytime I post something here of this nature I have to find the author (or authors) and give them credit??  what if I can't find them?  do I just say the ever-popular "author unknown"?

sorry, I'm just a little annoyed by this whole thing. . . I post something here, something that everyone knew that I hadn't written, something that I thought was funny and had something to teach us all as writers and what happens??

someone asks why I didn't credit the author. . .  now, I know that all things have authors, and that writing just doesn't happen out of the blue. . . but, most of the time, I know that the author's name is lost in the shuffle of it all. . . it's sad, but it happens. . . no one who read this thought that I had written it, or that I was claiming copyright of it. . .

the fact of the matter is, most of us don't have the time to sit and try to find out just where all of these things started and who the authors are. . . if someone has that time, then I applaud them, and would hope that they would correct any oversights and errors I have made, and leave it at that. . . not to give me a lesson in copyright (since I made no claims that this list was written by me, the understanding is, to most people, that I don't claim a copyright of this. . .)

ok, now I'm off my soapbox. . .I think, that in the future, I'll just send these through e-mail, it'll be a lot easier. . .

thank you for your time. . .  

--------------------------------------------------------------------



To the world, you may only be one person. But to one person, you may be the world.

[This message has been edited by Sven (06-18-2002 04:52 PM).]

Phaedrus
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since 01-26-2002
Posts 280


23 posted 06-18-2002 05:43 PM       View Profile for Phaedrus   Email Phaedrus   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Phaedrus


Sven

quote:
so, now what? does this mean that anytime I post something here of this nature I have to find the author (or authors) and give them credit?? what if I can't find them? do I just say the ever-popular "author unknown"?


Iíd prefer you got their permission, but this isnít my site.

quote:
sorry, I'm just a little annoyed by this whole thing. . . I post something here, something that everyone knew that I hadn't written, something that I thought was funny and had something to teach us all as writers and what happens??


Iím slightly annoyed too, if something is funny and good enough to pass on doesnít the author deserve a little respect for all his/her hard work?

quote:
someone asks why I didn't credit the author. . . now, I know that all things have authors, and that writing just doesn't happen out of the blue. . . but, most of the time, I know that the author's name is lost in the shuffle of it all. . . it's sad, but it happens. . . no one who read this thought that I had written it, or that I was claiming copyright of it. . .


I think youíll find I actually asked if you wrote this, at the time I didnít know you hadnít, you could be Tom Clancy for all I know so I suppose that makes me no one.

quote:
the fact of the matter is, most of us don't have the time to sit and try to find out just where all of these things started and who the authors are. . . if someone has that time, then I applaud them, and would hope that they would correct any oversights and errors I have made, and leave it at that. . . not to give me a lesson in copyright (since I made no claims that this list was written by me, the understanding is, to most people, that I don't claim a copyright of this. . .)


I donít see people giving you lessons in anything, the debate so far has concerned whether an item such as this is covered by copyright restrictions. I have no personal beef with you, I hardly know you but I know enough to believe you never intended anything malicious or underhand, if thatís the impression I gave I unreservedly apologise, that wasnít my intent. Itís just that I see this as the thin edge of a very large wedge between writers and the ownership and control of their work.

End of rant, and sorry I stole your soapbox
Ron
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24 posted 06-18-2002 08:35 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

Phaedrus, Brad alluded to Marlowe's "invention" of blank verse and Shakespeare's subsequent use of that invention. That's what I meant by patent rather than copyright. I was NOT suggesting that things written in blank verse couldn't or shouldn't be protected. There are some differences between UK and US copyright law, but not many and both nations (and three score more) have treaties to smooth out those difference. (Two years ago, I removed a number of poems by John Clare from the classical section of Passions when I discovered a UK citizen named Eric Robinson still owned the copyright to them. This came as a major surprise to me, as Clare died in 1864. English law can be confusing. )

Safire's work is, without question, protected. Including the list. I choose to believe it falls under Fair Use Doctrine, as a very small part of a book, but again admit that my choice is based on a deeper belief that Safire probably never really claimed ownership of the list. Any more than Sven did. However, Fair Use mandates that the author be given credit, else there can be no "review." And, frankly, even if Safire didn't originate the list, even if all he did was compile it, that was obviously a very useful thing (judging by its popularity) and he deserves the credit for it.

Standard procedure. If something is worth sharing and protected by copyright, we should post a link to the original source. A short excerpt to "entice" the reader to follow the link or to make a point is permissible. If you don't know whether the piece is protected by copyright, YOU SHOULD ASSUME THAT IT IS. I can assure you that I will.

Sven, as I said in my first post, no one was trying to pick on you. But, as someone in the newspaper industry, your response is a little surprising. Ask your reporters how much time they spend verifying sources? Frankly, if it's not worth your time to find the author of a piece, it's not worth our time to read it.

 
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