I spoke to Scott Nelson, the Tulsa World Web Editor (They can be reached at (918) 583-2161), and tried to make sense of their policy, and got nowhere. I am even more confused with what they are trying to accomplish than before I called.
According to Mr. Nelson, you need written permission to print the article and must print the article in full. I responded that I didn’t want to copy a whole article, just a quote, and he said that was not allowed and would be copyright infringement. When I asked why, he said it was their policy so that things wouldn not be ‘taken out of context.’
When I asked him if things were taken out of context, then wouldn’t that be libel, and they could get legal redress that way, he waffled. I then re-stated the question, and asked him if it was the policy of the Tulsa World to threaten lawsuits for copyright infringement to prevent possible cases of libel, and he didn;t really have much of an answer.
He also said, contrary to the letter to Bates Online, that linking was allowed, which leads me to believe that Mr. Bair, the Vice-President, was perhaps a touch overzealous or using terms he was not familiar with. Who knows.
At any rate, I must add that Mr. Nelson was very polite and helped to the best of his ability, even though he sounded agitated about the whole ordeal.
I thought by calling them I would clear some things up, but I am as confused as ever.
*** Update ***
This update from BatesLine seems to suggest that the confusion of Mr. Nelson is not the result of a human failing on Mr. Nelson’s part, but the inevitable result from a confusing and untenable policy:
Just time to link this: KTUL’s website has a new story with comments from World publisher Bobby Lorton and reaction from me.
Funny: He doesn’t want me to quote the paper out of context, but he doesn’t want me to link to the whole story so people can read it in context.
Actually, it is not funny at all. Sad is what I was thinking.