I want to share my new architectural needlepoint skills, “The Neighborhood” is proving to be quite a lesson in learning. I love the way Susan Jones has subtly marked the corners of the house (A in photo) by starting and stopping the stitches rather than outlining the corner or changing thread color. She also has offset stitches to give dimension (B in photo), and uses overdyes (C in photo) to suggest shading. And the roof stitch of house two (D in photo), while easy to stitch, takes a moment to watch the count; a great shingle stitch.
I love this piece and when I first started stitching this piece had no one in mind, just liked the piece. Now that I am stitching it, I have several people I think would like this as a gift. And that brings up a question: “How many times can you stitch a piece from the instructions you purchase without being in copyright infringement?” Read U.S.Copyright Law: http://www.copyright.gov/title17/ especially Section 107 Fair Use: http://www.copyright.gov/title17/92chap7.html and http://www.copyright.gov/fls/fl102.html .
I mentioned that I might want to stitch this piece more than once in the class, and many felt that I could stitch it as many times as I wished from one set of instructions as long as I was not selling them. I pointed out to them, that if this were a painted canvas that would not be the case.
I’ve read the copyright law and I think it is a bit confusing on the subject of multiple uses. I read this as I need a copy of the instructions for everyone I stitch, but it also states I can contact the owner for permission to use more than once. So I did send an email to the source I had and received this reply:
As long as you purchased the full pattern from your LNS you may stitch it as many times as you wish using your original set of instructions. You may not make copies of the pattern or any part hereof and give them or sell them to friends nor may you make the design or any part thereof and sell it — the design is for your use only to make for yourself and/or as gifts.
Truthfully I was a bit taken back by the responses. I feel like if I stitch it 2 or 3 times I should do something more than pay for the chart-pack once. If it were a painted canvas, I would have to purchase two or three. I know that some designers of chart-packs are adding a special embellishment that will require you to purchase additional chart-packs if you wish to have the embellishment.
AND then there is the question: What do you do if you want a chart-pack or instruction book that is no longer in print (and you know this for a fact)? What if a shop wants to teach such a piece in a class and they have only three copies of the instructions and 6-7 possible students? What if that original designer has either passed away, is no longer teaching, and you have tried every means to get in touch with the designer; can you make copies for a class? I think there are many great designs out there that should be taught again and again…they are classics.
I’m not sure where I stand on either issue, but I do know that I think I owe it to the art of needlepoint to do more than buy one chart-pack or instruction book and reproduce it 3 or 4 times. Maybe the answer to both questions is to donate a portion to a local charity or stitching guild of your choice.
What do you think is “Fair use?”
I hope everyone has time to stitch today! ttfn…sue