For those who don’t know, the Associated Press is telling bloggers that they are violating copyright laws when the reprint any part of an Associated Press article. It’s BS of course, because fair use laws allow for the reprint of small parts of an overall article. It’s been an established part of communication law for a very long time.
This is of concern to Peoria media because it could affect Peoria’s bloggers. I’ll let Jeff Jarvis (one of my inspirations) tell the story:
That, you see, is the AP way: the mill. That is not our way: the ethic of the quote and link. The AP is still trying to preserve its way. But, as I often say, protection is no strategy for the future. In the story – which, note, I’m only summarizing here, without the quotes from the AP that might better state its stance (ahem) – the agency comes off like a policy ping-pong game, going back and forth: We want to threaten but not to sue, we want to be reasonable but weâ€™re still going to demand that Cadenhead take down excerpts, we donâ€™t know what the hell to do. Maybe back off, AP. Because we won’t.
Exactly. Jarvis points out that the Associated Press way — taking the work of it’s members, rewriting it to make it shorter, and then passing it off to readers as somehow original — is itself disingenuous.Â The “blogger way” is more ethical. We clip a few paragraphs, identify the source and link to the source. It’s transparent. The AP way is not. The true origin is hidden from public view.
In my career, I recall two stories picked up by the Associated Press.Both ran without any attribution to me. And at least once, they screwed it up and made the subject of the article — in this case, country music singer Garth Brooks, look like a jerk when he visited Jacksonville, Ill., when he was anything but.
My advice to Blog Peoria members: Go ahead and quote AP articles if your want and link to the source.