Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Post Quakes, Academic Research Permissions

Since my blog posts on the 2010-2013 Christchurch quakes, I'd received many requests from all over the world & NZ for use of my quake pics in publications, or for research reasons. If students wanted to use my pics for theses, I allowed permission to use a pic or two, if the permission request was courteous & precise, asking for one or two specific photo permissions. If many photo permissions were asked for, or a whole blog post was asked for, the student or requestor was trying to scam my intellectual property.

Most annoying were those who used my blog pics & didn't bother to ask. They thought because I'd published on Blogger my intellectual property was theirs to steal.

Some email correspondence: The reader will see why the first request from a Canterbury University, geography researcher was irritating & declined by me & the second request from an Austrian archeology researcher was perfect & why I gave permission to use my intellectual property. The third example from a USA engineer was similarly approved.

I left punctuation, grammar, spelling errors as is, using only initials for privacy reasons.

PERMISSION REQUEST 1. Thurs, 18 Sept 2014 email, from student GA, University of Canterbury:

Hey there Mark my name is GA, I am a 3rd year student at University of Canterbury, and I am currently participating in the 300 level Geography 309 Research methods in Geography Our research group consisting of myself, JD, NF & WAH, has been assigned to working with the Peterborough village community [in Christchurch's quake trashed CBD] with DL as our community representative [a landscape architect] to develop an interactive mapping tool to archive past, present and future images and memories under the supervision of Professor EP.
We are hoping to have permission to utilize images from your website and the possibilities of linking your website to the mapping site software. [GA conflated website & blog post].
Could you please advise us as to any legal requirements relating to copyright regulations... [So much for Prof EP's supervision].

My Tues, 23 Sept 2014 email reply:

Beware. You're dealing with emotive Copyright property & potential theft of intellectual property. I spent many hours taking, editing & uploading quake pics [20 600 total] at considerable personal & financial costs & now many people want them. Lots of my blogging time is spent tracking down Copyright theft of my pics through Google searches & giving permission for use of my Copyright pics, for those who ask. Browse my Woza Mark & Woza Wanderer blog comments, you'll see what I mean.

I don't mind my specific quake images being used for varsity research purposes with my Woza Wanderer citing. I've already given several varsity students permissions to do so, amongst other permissions. As it stands via Blogger, anyone in the world can ask for my permission to use my blog pics. Why does Canterbury University want to control my blog pics?

Your linking / archiving suggestions sounds like Canterbury University wants to control use of & own my Copyright pics & Content. Over 3 quake years, I blogged scores more quake posts, more than just the snow job post. You're vague about varsity linking & archiving. I'd want to know in future specifically who'd want to use my Copyright pics, especially for their own financial gain. After all those thousands of images & content are mine & my family's copyright intellectual property. Archiving it under control of Canterbury University, it becomes Canterbury University intellectual property & no longer mine & my family's property.

You need to tell me what benefits / financial gains I get to have my Content, Copyright pics & intellectual property linked to by Canterbury University & archived by Canterbury University...

PS. I suggest you read Google's copyright info on Blogger. Read my blog post via Dr Karen Putasi's NZQA & theft of my copyright pic for NZQA year 13 biology exam purposes, a couple of years ago. The internet Copyright scene in NZ & NZ govt control / lack of control of it is nasty. Kim Dotcom's Mega Upload & Mega stories pertain. As for legal requirements, read NZ Copyright Act for the Copyright info you require. Christchurch Central Library had copies of the Act when I last looked.

Student GA's Tues, 23 Sept 2014 email reply:

Hi Mark sorry if my email was taken in the wrong context, the university of Canterbury is not to blame.
Our research group think you image collection of the CBD and blogg are amazing and can understand that you have concerns. we were willing to annotate all images with you name etc, and the link would have followed the Images intending on directing additional viewers to your blogg.
We are sorry for the misunderstanding.
Take care and nice work...

My Wed, 24 Sept email reply:

Again you are vague. Context is a weasel word for deception.

Let me be clear. I have NOT given you or any other UC student named by you or UC geography faculty permission to store, use or manipulate my copyright Woza Wanderer blog material, including pics & content, in any way. If you or others you mention have already done so, please delete, as it is my intellectual property, created at my cost & my legacy to my family.

I suggest you consult intellectual property lawyers. I'm astounded that prof EP you mention has not already supervised so...

My Sat, 27 Sept 2014 email to prof EP, University of Canterbury:

With reference to my email exchange with your student GA, my email address list was hacked within 2 days. That makes GA a possible suspect. Everyone in my email address list was emailed by [cultural] [The spam email to my email address list was about 4 EU countries, Poland, Turkey, Czechoslovakia & Bulgaria trying to improve students' English & studies via cultural activities].

Given GA's tone of entitlement to my intellectual property, I suggest you supervise GA regarding others' intellectual property & goodwill pertaining to UC....

No response from prof EP.

PERMISSION REQUEST 2. Thurs, 7 Oct 2014 email from Dr AK, Carnuntum archeologist, Austria:

Quite recently I happened to find your blog containing data on and pictures of the earth quake at Christchurch.

I am in the process of editing the acts of a scientific congress having taken place at Carnuntum / Austria in 2013 with the topic "The Carnuntum Earth Quake in Context", dealing with aspects of an earth quake which more or less obliterated the Roman town of Carnuntum around AD 360. In one of the articles submitted, its author, MK, who originally developed the theory that a quake once hit this place, needs a picture of a toppled wall which has without doubt been destroyed by a quake, as a parallel to prove that walls can indeed look like this after such an event (archeologists normally have no objection against the interpretation that an earth quake hit a site, but geologists tend to doubt any evidence not supported by seismograms, which are quite hard to come by for antiquity, but this is a lengthy discussion with which I don't want to bother you).

You have published online, in your blog, the picture attached, showing a perfect sample of a toppled wall at Christchurch, quite similar to what they do indeed often look alike in our excavations and this image would fit perfectly well as an illustration for Dr. MK's argument. I therefore request, with all courtesy, your permit to use the image in question, downloaded from your blog, in print in the above mentioned volume. This is a scientific, non-profit publication and therefore I hope to receive your permit cost free. You will of course be mentioned as author of the picture, therefore I kindly request that you tell me the name you want to be shown...

Dr. AK

Grabung Carnuntum
Archaologischer Park Carnuntum...

I gave Dr AK permission to use my Christchurch quake, toppled wall pic in his Austrian publication. It wasn't my first such permission, nor I expected my last.

PERMISSION REQUEST 3. Sun 08.02.15. An email exchange with a USA engineer, Dr CD, who felt entitled to all my 20 600 edited & uploaded, quake pics:

Sun 08.02.15. USA engineer, Dr CD: I am writing to request permission to use photographs you have posted. I will use these photographs in some professional publications I am preparing.

Let me first introduce myself. I am Dr CD. I have a PhD in civil engineering focusing on geotechnical engineering and lifeline systems. I live and work in Los Angeles, California. I work at the City of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. I investigate and report on earthquake effects and how lifeline systems are impacted. I do my research on a voluntary basis, mostly out of interest and drive to learn about and improve our common understanding of earthquake impacts on infrastructure and society. My goal is to incrementally improve our ability to reduce earthquake impacts and increase our seismic resilience around the world.

I have been to Christchurch several times since 2010 and am working with people from the University of Canterbury, CCC, SCIRT, GNS, the Treasury and others. My current interest is a unique study on the flooding which occurred following the series of earthquakes and how liquefaction caused this flooding. You have a set of photographs useful for helping me to make my case. In order to make this case and convince the scientific community of the facts I am preparing professional publications to be printed in conference proceedings, workshops, professional monographs and peer reviewed journals.

My request to you is to allow me to utilize your photographs from your blogs in my publications free of charge. Each time I use these photographs I will give full credit and reference Mark Esslemont.

Please let me know if you would provide permissions for general use of your posted photographs, or if you prefer I can provide specific request for each photograph I would like to use.

I am attaching photographs currently of most interest to me. However as I proceed with my studies there are others you have taken which may be useful for documentation.

I do not want to burden your time, but if you have additional photographs with the liquefaction flooding please let me know. Also I would like to know the locations where each was taken. I would appreciate help in identifying the photograph locations if you do not mind,

[Dr CD wanted a lot of "free" work. He obviously hadn't scrutinized my 175 odd, quake blog posts & seen that my 20 600 odd quake pics were ordered according to locations & captioned accordingly. I didn't caption every single pic, as I would've repeated ad nauesum, info already captioned in associated pics. Massively time consuming, making it easy for lazy academics & copyright thieves].

I do appreciate your taking time to take and post the information you have in the past. It is of great value for all to see. I also appreciate your time to review my request here.

Thank you in advance for your kind consideration...

My Sun 08.02.15 reply: You may use my blog pics you need for your research. Just credit my name & Woza Wanderer blog for each pic you use. It is not a good idea to give general permission, as my quake pics are unique & a copyright legacy for my adult family. Who knows my quake pics could be worth a fortune one day? So my family deserve that ownership right, having endured all the Canterbury quakes as well. Hence I would want to know what specific pics you will use for your publications.

Who knows, in future my publisher / publications will also need to know which of my copyright pics have been published elsewhere?

My quake pics were edited & uploaded in haste during quakes & aftershock times, so not all pics are captioned, time consuming & ongoing still, but the title of each blog post & captioned pics should give the location, in addition to my content, street names, etc, in each blog post.

If you require any more info for specific pics let me know.

Good luck with your research. I've had several requests for use of my quake pics for research projects, by councils' usage, universities, etc, local & worldwide, so my copyright is imperative.

I don't have current pics of the latest Christchurch quake related flooding [at Flockton Basin] as I am now living in Fairlie, several hours drive away from Christchurch, in the Southern Alps...

Mon 09.02.15. USA engineer Dr CD's response: Thank you greatly for approval to use your photos. I will acknowledge you and Woza Wanderer blog each time and also let you know which photographs are being used in each publication I use them in.

I definitely do not want to impact your copyright and did not intend to request to do so. To the contrary I completely respect your interest and copyright, which is why I made the request.

Thank you again and please be prepared to hear from me again, probably several times over the coming year to get more information on specific photos and also to identify which photos I would like to use in different publications.

I never heard from Dr CD again.

Copyright Mark JS Esslemont.

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