[sword-devel] Copyrighted Texts Summary

Jerry Hastings sword-devel@crosswire.org
Thu, 02 Dec 1999 22:17:28 -0700

At 06:55 PM 12/1/1999 -0800, Chris Little wrote:
>Don't these companies deserve credit
>for having commissioned the translations and don't they then deserve
>monetary compensation for that since they intended from the start to sell
>them for profit and made no implication to the contrary?
>--Chris Little

Yes. Well put. I have said this before, but it may be worth repeating. I am
with a non-profit org. We have nothing that we charge for, and we have no
paid staff. Which I like. But there are good things we do not do, because
they would force us to charge and/or provide paid staff. But, I see a lot
of good things that get done because some for-profit company was there to
do it. Or they get done with much higher quality than could be done for free. 

As to translation, once in a while someone comes along and does a
translation without getting paid to translate, or at least a promise of
royalties. But most of the translations now used, modern and otherwise,
were done by people and organizations that did get paid for them, or
planned to, or the rights were given to a publisher in exchange for
printing a number of copies for the translators to distribute. But those
that want free modern translations can get together and produce them. As
MPJ is doing. This should be encouraged!

The chance to give people a permanent source of free Bibles (translated,
made and distributed without cost, and without limit) is a somewhat new
thing. Back when scholars worked with quills and ink wells, and print was
done on hand cranked presses with hand placed type, it was hard to get even
a little for free. Imagine trying to do it for free in the days of scrolls!