Copyright, today and tomorrow?

Steve Halford halford at SFU.CA
Sat Nov 2 17:59:15 CST 1996

I have been following with interest the ongoing discussions on
copyright,  but with the exception of a passing reference by Doug Yanega,
I haven't seen anyone address the fact that there are *two* threads on
copyright currently running on Taxacom.

While most contributors see no threat from *existing* copyright laws,
people like Karen Wilson and Leonard Krishtalka are warning us that these
laws may be about to change radically.  The inference from a quick read
of Leonard Krishtalka's background material on the proposed "World
Intellectual Property Organisation Treaty" is that all those fears of
copyrighted scientific names, species descriptions, species lists...
could soon be a reality!  If precedence can be set for an electronic
database being declared *sui generis*,  then your next "Revision of the
Genera of..." (no pun intended) can too. (and if *your* publishers
woudn't do it,  somebody else's might!)

Maybe we should go back and hear what Richard's lawyer has to say!

Steve (halford at
Museum Technician
Simon Fraser University
Burnaby, B.C., Canada

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