Jennifer Caudle wrote:

> Is there a good online source for sorting all these issues out?

I have not run across many pages discussing anything other than
U.S. copyright.

> I know the best source for US copyright law is the US Copyright Office
> page (, but is there a UK equivalent?

There is Her Majesty's Stationery Office but it talks about Crown
copyright which I guess is copyright that the U.K. government claims
for its publications.

> And is there any real consensus on quoting poetry in scholarly
> research? (For instance, are there different rules for quoting poems
> published only in the UK, or do the rule differ according to where the
> *research* is published?)

The rules are for where you publish but I would not consider this
safe.  There are many treaties involved and more being considered.
These could get you in trouble (the Hague treaty could be really
nasty.)  Also, the poem might be copyrighted to someone in the
U.K. but some U.S. firm could own the rights to publication in the
U.S.  and could take legal action against you.

It is now difficult to determine what is and is not under copyright
protection.  Copyright notices are not required now nor is
registration.  Also, in the past copyright extended for a certain
number of years (renewable) but now extend a number of years past
death.  So it is difficult to determine who is the real copyright
owner (a firm, a widow, the still kicking but elderly author) and
whether the work is in the public domain (just when did the author die

   Rick Parker

P.S. - In the old days (1800s) the U.S. did not copyright works by
foreign authors nor did it protect them.  It was thus legal to print
and sell foreign works.  Some foreign firms had arrangements for the
work to be copyrighted by some American in exchange for a small sum.
Now consider Hollywood's griping about Chinese priracy of videotapes.