10 June 2013

Cherry County Group Improperly Using Copyrighted Article

This is a screen capture of the home page of the Association on June 7, 2013. The article is known to have been posted in a similar manner in May, and probably longer, though no documentation is available.

The home webpage for the Cherry County Wind Energy Association is improperly using a copyrighted article from the Norfolk Daily News.

The article discussing the "r-plan" was issued by the newspaper on February 4th, 2012, and contained a copyright statement at the bottom of the webpage where it was posted. On February 6th, the same article — but with a different headline — was reissued, according to long-standing agreements, in the Omaha World-Herald with a similar copyright statement.

The article being used in its entirety on the home page of the association, does not provide any attribution or indicates its source. The group goes so far as to indicate at the bottom of its home page, a copyright statement for all material they present, which is a dubious claim.

This is two or perhaps three violations of journalistic standards.

  1. Use of a copyrighted article without permission of the author. Both a primary editor at the Norfolk Daily News and Omaha World-Herald staff indicated that they had not provided permission for reuse.
  2. Failure to provide suitable attribution. For example the Norfolk Daily News when it does provide permission, asks that the following statement be included: "Reprinted with permission of the Norfolk Daily News."
  3. Disregard for the professional courtesy protocols which should be used when reusing someone else's work.

The association should remove the article or go through the necessary procedures for proper use. It is disappointing that they seem to convey a casual perspective of using other's work.