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Re: Paleo-Conference in Benevento.

my good friend Luis Rey (luisrey@ndirect.co.uk) wrote:

<No photographs? Thay must be joking!  What has this to do with any
protection? Am I going to 'steal its soul' ? Or maybe sell bootleg
photographs of it? Scipionyx is popular, but not precisely a Rock Star.
The specimen is well known... I have never come across an institution or
country anywhere in the world that doesn't allow photographs of public
exhibitions of fossil specimens. Maybe I'm wrong.>

  I think one reason is thus, and its perfectly logical:

  Possession of an object is absolute control. Protection on use,
perception, etc., of that object is intrinsically involved with
possession. Reproduction of that object, as a cast, model, photograph, may
be/is similarly protected, and can be the owned property of the possesser
of the reproduced object. A painting is the property of the painter, until
gifted or bought, and any reproduction of that painting, either a photo or
a copy, can be similarly considered property (copyright) of the original
producer, until sold, gifted, granted permission of use of, etc. Most
photos of specimens in papers, unless produced by the author, are
copyritten by the owner of the specimen, be that institution, state, or
nation. Typically, photos are granted with a coption that reads
"reproduced with permission of ..." or, "(c) Institute of Paleontology..."
and so forth. Any photographed specimen included in a paper must be
granted by permission of the institution; many institutions will grant
permission before hand, and often waive such permission when grants in
museums state "photographs can be taken." Statements to the effect of "Do
not take photographs" are pretty clear. Still, one can take sketches, or
ask the curator for permission. It doesn't involve a lot of problem.
Original sources (Greg Paul's skeleton of *Scipionyx* in _Dinosaurs of the
Air_) does not count and reproduced, since it is an original structure. So
is any drawing. A photograph is of the specimen itself. It seems logical
then in the case of the Italian governments stricture, though perhaps too
harsh. One can easily say that any reputable scientist or institution may
reproduce the photo as long as the use is by certain guidelines.

  My couple lira on the issue,


Jaime A. Headden

  Little steps are often the hardest to take.  We are too used to making leaps 
in the face of adversity, that a simple skip is so hard to do.  We should all 
learn to walk soft, walk small, see the world around us rather than zoom by it.

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