significance of name-bearing types

Barry M. OConnor bmoc at UMICH.EDU
Wed Oct 2 15:01:04 CDT 2002

At 7:03 PM +0100 10/2/02, Lynn Raw wrote:
...Since Type specimens are the 'property of science' and therefore are not
>'owned' by either individuals or institutions...

This is, unfortunately, not true. The ICZN (72.10) says they're "held in
trust for science" so they're still "owned" by the individuals or
institutions.  At least one major European museum carries the notion of
ownership beyond the actual specimen by having a policy stating that they
retain ownership (or copyright) of any images made from any of their
specimens, including types.  Therefore, you can't publish or put a photo
you took of one of their specimens on your web site without obtaining
permission. You have to sign off on this before they'll let you see the
specimens. - Barry

Barry M. OConnor
Curator & Professor             phone: (734) 763-4354
Museum of Zoology               FAX: (734) 763-4080
University of Michigan          e-mail: bmoc at
1109 Geddes Ave.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1079  USA

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