Re: press releases and copyright

by "Ted Temer" <temer(at)>

 Date:  Sat, 28 Apr 2001 15:52:28 -0700
 To:  "HWGBASICS" <hwg-basics(at)>
 References:  net
  todo: View Thread, Original

I agree with you that by very definition, a Press Release is offered for
wide spread reprinting and/or publishing. Especially when published by those
"publications" designed to distribute information. Such things as magazines,
news media and even newsletters--either print or web--should qualify as the
"Intended Use".

This would be especially true when the quote or article is prefaced by:

"For Immediate Release" or "For Release on (such and such date)".

This certainly implies the "release" of the information into the public


The person "re-printing or re-publishing" such releases to the general
public would still be responsible in insuring that the facts contained in
the release were accurate. Therefore, the source of the release may be very
important. Is it reasonable that this source can be trusted to put out
accurate information??

For example, if I put out the following on my magazine site:

For Immediate Release:

"NewsRedding.Com has determined that most Americans consider members of the
Republican Political Party to be financial simpletons."

You may agree or disagree. But either way, it would seem doubtful that most
Americans actually believe such a thing. So, before you dare re-print or
publish such a story as fact, you would need to ask yourself:

Just who is NewsRedding.Com??
How did they come to this conclusion??
Was it based on a vote or some other means of reliable research??
Or was it just some editor's personal belief??
Or--as in the case above--was it just made up as an example of silliness??

As it would be very difficult to qualify NewsRedding.Com as a reliable
source for anything, the story should not be used.

However--if one really wanted to use this "quote" then it should be used in
just that way--as a quote:

Example: In a recent press release, NewsRedding.Com said, Quote--blaw, blaw,

Even here, there would be limits to the type of material that could be
quoted with immunity based on what sort of publication was quoting what. Not
even the most "far-out" yellow rag would dare run inflammatory material.
Such as a press release from an obvious racist organization. (There are such
things as lawsuits)

Before responding to this post, I spoke with a couple of buddies who work
with the Record Searchlight and the Sacramento Bee. (Both California
newspapers) And--as all three of us agreed on these general guidelines--that
fact alone should be cause for you to take this advice with a grain of salt.

Best wishes
Ted Temer
Temercraft Designs Redding, CA

> Can press releases be posted on a web site in part or in whole, without
> seeking any additional permissions?  I'm thinking that a press release by
> definition is content to distribute..
> susan

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