Typeface/Let's Make it Clear

Subject: Typeface/Let's Make it Clear
From: Paul Trummel <trummel -at- U -dot- WASHINGTON -dot- EDU>
Date: Wed, 1 Dec 1993 13:09:31 -0800

I wrote the research paper "Let's Make it Clear!" and
hold the copyright for the material it contains.
Yesterday, as a result of the posting by Randy Harris,
I received a private email message from Nancy Burns,
who says "I would appreciate knowing from you if you
think my re-posting was inappropriate or illegal, and
if it has caused you any problems." I consider the
posting both appropriate and legal. It has certainly
not caused me any problems.

I regard Randy Harris as a long time friend and a
person of great integrity. However, I feel that in this
instance he may have become overly protective of my
work. Perhaps this results from the ongoing plagiarism
of my work by faculty members and graduate students in
the Department of Languishment, Licentiousness, and
Corruption at Rensaler Politicking Institution. An
environment in which we mutually suffered.

I do not feel that Nancy needed to get my permission
prior to posting the paper as long as she re-posted the
complete paper, gave me credit, and included my
copyright statement. She met with all three
requirements. However, if Nancy had decided to produce
printed copies of my work then a different set of
criteria would apply. These criteria, established over
many years by various international conventions and
copyright laws apply to all printed material. To my
knowledge, no such laws exist and precedents have yet
to become established for the Internet.

It pleases me to know that Nancy cared enough about the
request of student Kathy Angelucci. She re-posted my
paper so that Kathy could have access to the up-to-
date information that she had requested for her term
paper. I had considered sending the paper to her myself
but did not do so.

Karen Kay sees the case differently when posting a
paper to another group without the author's permission.
I believe that the rules remain the same whether it
relates to a single list or many lists. The Internet
exists as an entity made up of many networks. As a
matter of practicality, individual lists may not make
their own rules any more than publishers may determine
their own copyright rules.

"Emily Posts of the Internet," and aspiring justices of
the supreme court of the United States, abound. They
apparently have the psychic ability to forecast supreme
court decisions that will probably create precedents in
law during the twenty-first century. Such precedents
will result from our networking activities today.

Kendal Stitzel publically admits her ignorance of
research papers and then "cringes" at the vocabulary
used in glossarial definitions intended for educated
readers. Perhaps she should stop writing for a sub-
literate populace and take one of the accredited
courses in technical communication presently touted on
this list. However, she should beware of the

In conclusion, I hope that caring people (exhibited by
Nancy in her concern over Kathy's need and Randy's
posting, and Randy by his posting) will continue to
help others in whatever way they can through the
interchange of information. To Randy, I say thank you
for your continued support in my endeavors, however,
this time I disagree with you.

Paul Trummel
University of Washington

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