Re: Looking for Copyright info

Subject: Re: Looking for Copyright info
From: Tracy Boyington <trlyboyi -at- GENESIS -dot- ODVTE -dot- STATE -dot- OK -dot- US>
Date: Thu, 26 Sep 1996 11:12:32 +0000

> If you have a page about cars, and put a link to Ford's pages, complete
> with a link to a picture of this year's model, the browser will read the
> page from the Ford web site. You have merely invited the reader to take a
> look at the picture, and showed it in its own location. MAYBE! There are
> people who assert that this is breach of copyright, but I'm not sure what
> the truth is.

Iain, are you talking about a link as in "click here to go to Ford's
page" and the user sees FORD's page, or a link where you put the
reference to Ford's graphic in your code so Ford's graphic shows up
on YOUR page? The first is fine, the second is *legally* questionable
(I think it's a copyright violation, but lots of people think otherwise).
But even if you (or your lawyers) decide it is legal, it's still not a wise
thing to do. Why not? Because users are downloading the graphic from
Ford's server, not yours. This opens you up to all kinds of
interesting possibilities.

1. This practice puts more work on Ford's server without any benefit for
them. Webmasters do not like this and they will do MEAN things to you
(i.e., renaming their original graphic so your page no longer calls
it up, then replacing the graphic in question with an obscene graphic or
one that says "this is a stolen graphic.") Some webmasters regularly
search for references to their own graphics for just this reason.

2. What if Ford's server is down or slow? Users will hang there waiting on
Ford's slow server.

3. What happens when Ford changes their graphic? Instead of a photo
of a new Mustang, your users will see that wonderful "broken graphic"

Again, I don't know if this is what Iain meant, but it's a trick that
people like to play thinking it will get around the copyright issue.
Kim might need this info just in case somebody in her office
thinks this is a good idea.


Tracy Boyington trlyboyi -at- genesis -dot- odvte -dot- state -dot- ok -dot- us
Oklahoma Department of Vocational & Technical Education
Stillwater, Oklahoma, USA

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