Orbell Communications

Communicating Your Message

Seeking permission to publish others material

Posted by jorbell on November 24, 2008

I just thought I would update the site on the situation regarding the OC newsletter. It is still going to happen but in preparation work one or two issues came to light as to what I can and cannot publish.

I’m looking to include a news section with brief stories on what’s happening across the industry but of course I need to be sure that I have permission to do so in a different format. The newsletter is still going to be electronic but it is being used in a different way.

In an online world, articles are published and re-published many times but this is only acceptable if the article source is quoted with a direct link back to the original website. I have always included that information plus the journalist’s name when available. This is so important because the material must not be seen as being mine. That is why I am careful to add that information at the start and end of every news article published on here so that there is no doubt as to the source.

Problems occur when you use material in a way that is different to how it was originally presented. In the newsletter I am preparing I will be creating an Acrobat PDF document. I still intend to credit the relevant websites and authors and provide interactive links within the file but it is common courtesy to ask if this is acceptable to them. This is particularly important if you are naming any names within the body of the text.

It is possible to make a piece ambiguous by not including specific sources but it makes the article almost pointless. A survey may well reveal that a certain percentage of consumers act in a particular way but without evidence or a source, it doesn’t mean anything – I could just picking out a figure from thin air.

It would be tempting to drop any section which includes a sign-off minefield but there are benefits. If you can build a relationship with a particular news outlet there could be opportunities for mutual promotion. Everyone wants to drive traffic to their sites so it’s best to keep options open. If one particular site is used for news stories that reinforces the branding of that particular site but it also adds strength to your own proposition.

So to sum up, the OC newsletter has been temporarily delayed while I attend to this issue but I will be adding further information on preparatory work you can carry out. Later, I shall post an article on the use of imagery in your newsletter so check back soon.

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