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I just got this e-mail:

"Dear Ramsey

I am currently completing a book called FANZINES (Thames & Hudson) and have included the cover of List Goodbye, Baltimore, no. 12 (fall 2008), fully credited in the book.

My book looks at the history of fanzines in a general overview of UK and USA-based self-publishing. As a good example of an interesting contemporary personal zine it would be remiss not to include it in any history of fanzines. The book is due out in September and I hope this will establish the importance of this form of self-publishing.

I do hope this is okay.

Yours sincerely,

Prof Teal Triggs
University of the Arts London
"


Poor form right? I know a lot of zinesters don't care about their things being reproduced or used, and I actually don't mind at all for it to be included, but it seems like asking ahead of time would be the right thing to do, right? Especially for a book?


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To whom it may concern:

Please feel free to use the covers of my zine(s) in your scholarly publications on zines, self-publishing, D-I-Y culture, etc. If you should happen to forget to notify me until just before the book goes to press, don't sweat it. Just let me know that I have been credited so that I can call my mum to let her know that somethin' I made will be reproduced in the pages of a book she can pull from shelves at Borders Books and Barnes and Noble.

You see, I have yet to give my mum grandchildren and my brain-draining-day-job is nothin' at all to brag about. Any opportunity that comes up which gives her braggin' rights with her friends is alright by me. And when said friends pull from their purses new wallet-sized photos of their grandchildren, mom can respond by whipping out the hardcover (or softcover) that she keeps in her purse for just for such an occasion.

I've spent more than a decade promoting my publications online by way of sites like Livejournal, Myspace, Flickr, my own website and various zine-friendly forums, so it's no secret that I make zines. Also, in the process of making zines, I have put my life on paper for public consumption, frequently naming names -- other people's names -- in the process.

You know, I also appropriate the works of other creators in the process of making zines (comics, photographs, drawings), because zine culture has traditionally required that you "steal with both hands." But I do give credit to (nearly) everyone I take/borrow/steal from. That said, I could do nothing but appreciate the same courtesy; there should always be honor amongst thieves, you know?

So sayeth...

St. Paco
Inertia,

Obviously I would try to read the situation and base my decision on statements made by that "someone" I've read earlier, among other "cues". I don't believe I have an ipso facto obligation to REFRAIN from publishing an address on an envelope or anywhere else, unless I'm asked or told not to. All somebody has to say is "Do not print my address". Hey, get a rubber stamp. It's easy.

I've read it's bad, wrong, very inadvisable to give out your e-mail address. (Worse than your physical address???) Lisa Falour's been forwarding me lots of e-mail correspondence she's been having. With them come all kinds of e-mail addresses of people I've never met. Others do the same thing. Often, more recently it seems, group e-mails have "undisclosed reciepents" on the "To" line, but very often there's a whole slew of addresses. I think that's great. All the easier to connect with likeminded people.

It seems like the more obsessed we are with trying to "be safe", the more we distance and DISconnect ourselves from each other. I guess that suits the super-insular cliques, within the "zine" community , and outside it.

Why should old-time zinesters, old fossils, like Lisa and I, have to submit to your "default postion" of "getting permission first" in so many things. I think the OLD default position of have the restrictions being clearly stated is just as good, if not better.

Here're some comments I had on another forum:

http://pets.groups.yahoo.com/group/Libertarians_For_Animal_Rights/m...

JND

Inertia said:
James:

You're publishing someones ADDRESS without permission? I don't think that is acceptable. I think that is rude. Just because someone gives their address to you doesn't mean that they want you publishing it for anyone to see. I realize zinesters give out their address all they time, but they should have the right to chose when and how it is given out.
If this entire time you have been referring to email addresses, fine. You can do what you want with them.

But if you have been referring to physical addresses I still think it's in poor form.
I have absolutely no problem with people publishing my email address. That's what I do with zine reviews. I also would not have a problem with people posting my address if I included it in my zine- which I do. But for people that simply put an address on an envelope? No. That's a private interaction between the two of you. A lot of people are hesitant about giving their address out over the internet or to strangers- and rightfully so. A lot of people don't use PO boxes. It's just common courtesy to ask first.

And I think this whole thing is rude, personally. Yeah, zines aren't like books, but that doesn't mean you can just do whatever you want with them. I mean, you CAN, but you shouldn't. It's about respect. Someone who loves the zine scene that much should know that.

James- You don't HAVE to. But it's polite. That's the thing. You're not going to make any friends that way, and then YOU'RE distancing yourself. I don't think people should have to specify. It doesn't take that long to ask.
Uh, James, are you enough of an "old timer" to know who Bill Price is? Or do you just not care, being male?
I'll concede that it might not be a good idea to print apparent home addresses on envelopes, and actually have avoided doing this 99% of the time in the last 5 years. Since one HAS to have one on the envelope by law since all this Homeland Security garbage started, the sender doesn't have a choice of leaving it off, and that's a point in their favor. But I still don't see what the huge issue is in revealing somebody's address. I just took a look at the phone book and I'd say about 75 to 90% of the private listings have home address listed with their number, and phone books are free all over the place in grocery stores. It never seems to have been much of an issue until recently, and only in the neo-zine-scene. I recently had a job working for a client and got lost, and had to stop for directions and the people didn't hesitate to help me find the place. I could have been a robber or a psycho or something.

Actually, I remember a young girl sent in a pen pal ad for my zine, about 10, maybe 15 years ago, and I politely wrote her I couldn't print it, because I thought it might be dangerous for her, and that she should ask her parents first. So maybe I'm not such an irresponsible monster afterall. But I was also a just a little worried about seeming like a paternalistic sexist, so maybe you can't win.

Intertia and Star Blanket---WHY do you think it's okay to give out somebody's e-mail address? Many people think it's a very BAD thing to do, very "bad form" and would be very upset if they did. Why are your sensibilities any better than theirs...or mine?
Asking one person if one may give out or publish their address may be easy, but if you're into review, contact or ad zines, the kind I was back before the Internet and still am, it can be pretty time consuming and burdensome, especially when many zinesters might not care that much anyway. Is just stamping your envelopes and stationary any harder? Maybe it would be. I'm not sure at this point.

I remember I was at the dentist's office and they came out to call me in. They said, "James?" There was apparently another, or maybe a few, more "James's" in the room, so there was a pause of confusion, but they didn't say a last name. It did turn out to be me. I asked them why they just didn't say my last name, and they told me it was against current "state (CA) privacy laws". This seemed to me to be carrying it to absurd levels. I feel the same way about the direction "getting permission" is going in society and the self-publising world. How far do you take it? Many zinesters review zines they pick up by chance in various places. Are they doing wrong? Do they have to "get permission" first? Can I *mention* someone, publish their name, without getting permission???

I'm just not quite getting the moral intuitions in a lot of this.

Erica---Yes, I heard and read about Bill Price. Pedophiles and predators can wheedle their way into anything, any which way. They manage to get into the securist social networking sites, and may have any number of accomplices that apparently keep behind the scenes. You'd have to lock yourself into an impregnable fortress and wall yourself in to keep them out. You just have to always be "en guarde" if you choose to open the lines of communication even with only those you want to reach out to.

But don't worry. I'm not going to publish anybody's home address on an envelope. I'll make that one concession.
James, no one was saying you're an irresponsible moster. At least, I'm not. You're presenting your opinions very strongly and so am I. This is an important issue for anyone, especially for us zinesters.

I have never experienced anyone being nervous about handing out their email address. Also, if I don't know the zinester I'm reviewing personally, I email them first asking if they would like the review published and what contact info they'd like to use, if any. I only include 4-6 reviews per zine, so that is possible for me. I realize that's time consuming if you're doing more, but it's part of the deal, in my opinion.

Anyway, this really doesn't have all that much to do with the original topic, so I'm going to rest. If anyone has any updates about the original topic, I'd love to know what's going on.

James N. Dawson said:
I'll concede that it might not be a good idea to print apparent home addresses on envelopes, and actually have avoided doing this 99% of the time in the last 5 years. Since one HAS to have one on the envelope by law since all this Homeland Security garbage started, the sender doesn't have a choice of leaving it off, and that's a point in their favor. But I still don't see what the huge issue is in revealing somebody's address. I just took a look at the phone book and I'd say about 75 to 90% of the private listings have home address listed with their number, and phone books are free all over the place in grocery stores. It never seems to have been much of an issue until recently, and only in the neo-zine-scene. I recently had a job working for a client and got lost, and had to stop for directions and the people didn't hesitate to help me find the place. I could have been a robber or a psycho or something.

Actually, I remember a young girl sent in a pen pal ad for my zine, about 10, maybe 15 years ago, and I politely wrote her I couldn't print it, because I thought it might be dangerous for her, and that she should ask her parents first. So maybe I'm not such an irresponsible monster afterall. But I was also a just a little worried about seeming like a paternalistic sexist, so maybe you can't win.

Intertia and Star Blanket---WHY do you think it's okay to give out somebody's e-mail address? Many people think it's a very BAD thing to do, very "bad form" and would be very upset if they did. Why are your sensibilities any better than theirs...or mine?
Asking one person if one may give out or publish their address may be easy, but if you're into review, contact or ad zines, the kind I was back before the Internet and still am, it can be pretty time consuming and burdensome, especially when many zinesters might not care that much anyway. Is just stamping your envelopes and stationary any harder? Maybe it would be. I'm not sure at this point.

I remember I was at the dentist's office and they came out to call me in. They said, "James?" There was apparently another, or maybe a few, more "James's" in the room, so there was a pause of confusion, but they didn't say a last name. It did turn out to be me. I asked them why they just didn't say my last name, and they told me it was against current "state (CA) privacy laws". This seemed to me to be carrying it to absurd levels. I feel the same way about the direction "getting permission" is going in society and the self-publising world. How far do you take it? Many zinesters review zines they pick up by chance in various places. Are they doing wrong? Do they have to "get permission" first? Can I *mention* someone, publish their name, without getting permission???

I'm just not quite getting the moral intuitions in a lot of this.

Erica---Yes, I heard and read about Bill Price. Pedophiles and predators can wheedle their way into anything, any which way. They manage to get into the securist social networking sites, and may have any number of accomplices that apparently keep behind the scenes. You'd have to lock yourself into an impregnable fortress and wall yourself in to keep them out. You just have to always be "en guarde" if you choose to open the lines of communication even with only those you want to reach out to.

But don't worry. I'm not going to publish anybody's home address on an envelope. I'll make that one concession.
James, I'm not calling you a monster either. It was very responsible of you to turn that girl down. I agree with Star Blanket River Child, we should just end this because it is way off topic.
Amber / Culture Slut said:
Back on topic...
She can give all the speeches she wants, but I don't think it makes it makes her any more a part of the community than, say, me giving speeches about space would make me an astronaut. Like you said, she should have known better.

As I said upthread, the author, editor, and publisher did not do their jobs in making sure ALL permissions were secured, and I do agree that the situation really rots. I noticed the book is up for pre-order on Amazon. At this point, I think it may take a serious lawsuit to stop the presses, unfortunately.

However, I just wanted to address what Amber said in her post here. I think it is possible to be a member of a "community" surrounding an item of culture without producing said item of culture. In my case, it would be indie comic and minicomics. I read many, many minicomics and self-published comics, probably more so than zines these day. I review them on my blog, and attend small press events like the SPX (Small Press Expo), MoCCA Fest, and (hopefully next year) Alternative Press Expo and Stumptown Comics Fest. I know many minicomics creators.

However, I have never made a minicomic, never even tried. However, I still feel connected to the minicomic "community" through the friendships I have made, reviews I write, and conferences I attend.

You don't need to be able to create an item of culture to become deeply involved with it.

That being said, she still should have secured permissions well in advance.
Though I can totally see why this situation is pretty sucky, no one actually needs to obtain permission to write about you in a book, nor to site or quote your writing. Though I don't think it really applies here, imagery and (limited) text is also perfectly legal to use if the purpose is for a review or educational purposes. Just because it would have been nice, doesn't mean it's illegal.

As well, I really cringe at any attempt to define who is a part of the zine community is and who is not. What next, a ranking based on how many zines you've made? How "authentic" they are? Cut and paste zine maker is more "real" that those who use a computer program to lay out their zines? What about those who go to a printer rather than a photocopier? I'm getting a bit dramatic, but it's a slippery slope and would I hope that a huge fan and potential historian would be welcomed by the community.

I'm not meaning to critisize but to give another side that may not have been considered. Just something to think about.
You know, for those that don't want to be included in the book or don't want incorrect information printed or are offended she didn't ask permission first (which I would be...what did was pretty shitty), there are legal options. What she did is NOT appropriation, it's copyright infringement and it's flat-out illegal.

Honestly, I think you should all send cease and desists (or rather the international equivalent) directly to the publisher.
Anyone want to submit their zine to the exhibition/reading room thing?! :P
http://webe.emv3.com/thamesandhu/Fanzines/Fanzines_ForFacebook.html

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