Legal Disclaimer (for images)

REGARDING IMAGES: The prime-directive purpose of this website is to facilitate and defend the freedoms of thought and speech by offering for sale merchandise designed to remind people of history's bravehearts who have given their lives for the cause of those indispensable individual freedoms. Generally speaking, the images used on this website are either the original artistic creations of the website owners (all rights are reserved), or are deemed by them to either be free, in the public domain, or constitute a legally acceptable fair use per the Fair Use doctrine. If any copyright owner should happen to disagree, please email an ACCURATE AND COMPLETE explanation of any and all SPECIFIC reasons for the objection/s to the webmaster PRIOR to taking other action. Thanks!

UNAUTHORIZED PRACTICE OF LAW DISCLAIMER: The legal information on this "legal disclaimer" page is public information, and may be freely copied and altered for the reader's specific use/s, PROVIDED ANY AND ALL REFERENCE/S TO THIS WEBSITE OR ITS WEBMASTER IS DELETED. Under ABSOLUTELY NO  circumstances is this page to be construed as the webmaster directly or indirectly giving unauthorized legal advice. This "legal disclaimer" page is to be construed exclusively as the webmaster's personal explanation of his layman's understanding and opinion of the relevant law regarding the so-called "Fair Use" doctrine. The Fair Use doctrine is codified at 17 US §107, which, at the http://www.copyright.gov/title17/92chap1.html#107 webpage of the U.S. Copyright Office, is found to say:

"§107. Limitations on exclusive rights: Fair use40

Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include — 

(1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;

(2) the nature of the copyrighted work;

(3) the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and

(4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

The fact that a work is unpublished shall not itself bar a finding of fair use if such finding is made upon consideration of all the above factors."

REGARDING BURDEN OF PROOF: The webmaster has had occasion to do extensive research on the subject of copyright law. It is his personal experience with some of the music copyright associations that they are not above deliberately misrepresenting the law. (That TRUE story, complete with case cites, and a music association's chief counsel's written agreement with my position, will be added to the webmaster's personal website and linked to this page later when the webmaster finds more time.)

Basically, the bottom line of copyright law is whether or not you are making money off of somebody else's work or not, and/or whether or not your use has a negative effect on the copyright owner's ability to make money off of his own work. If you are in NO way making money off of the copyright owner's work, and you are in NO way negatively affecting the copyright owner's ability to profit from his own work, in my opinion, your use is in all likelihood morally valid.

It has been said by various wannabe-clever music association bluffers that the "not for profit" argument doesn't matter. That is so incomplete and misleading as to amount to a lie, as manifested by the fact they backed down when I offered to go into federal court with them in a "friendly" 28 USC §2201 declaratory judgment action with all the facts already stipulated to for the court's convenience in determining the meaning and intent of the relevant law as applied to the facts of my situation. Although it is true that a copyright owner does not have to allege profit on the part of the alleged infringer for his court complaint to pass threshhold jurisdictional muster, the "not for profit" argument can be raised as an affirmative defense by the alleged infringer, which DOES make it legally relevant, because once that affirmative defense has been raised, the burden of proof falls back onto the copyright owner to prove that the affirmative defense raised is inadequate or untrue.

WEBMASTER'S PERSONAL FAIR USE RATIONALE:

It is believed that all of the images (if any) used on heretictshirts.com — other than those which are the original artistic creations of the website's owners, or are sincerely believed by them in good faith to be free or in the public domain — are subject to the Fair Use doctine because:

1. The images are used for educational and informational purposes and in educational and informational ways only, and for no other purpose/s.
2. The images illustrate the text next to which they appear, which describes the character, idea, related subject matter and/or surrounding cirmstances discussed or portrayed.
3. The images are available on the heretictshirts.com website only in roughly thumbnail size, so copies made from them would be of very inferior quality.
4. The images are of much lower resolution than the original, so copies made from them will be of very inferior quality.
5. The images do not limit the copyright owner’s rights to market or sell the work in any way.
6. The images are used on various other high-traffic websites, so their use on heretictshirts.com, a very low-traffic website, does not make them significantly more accessible or visible than they already are.
7. The images are being used in an educational and informative way and should not detract from the commercial value of the original work in any way.
8. No free or public domain images have been located for these items, but in the event a suitable free image is located for any allegedly infringing image in the future, the allegedly objectionable image will be deleted as soon as reasonably possible and replaced with the free image.
9. The webmaster has no desire to use (even fairly) any person's work who sincerely objects to the use. Accordingly, the webmaster will cheerfully (and as promptly as possible) remove any image/s appearing on this website which the lawful copyright owner requests him to remove.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION REGARDING THE USE OF IMAGES:

A Complete Guide to Finding and Using Incredible Flickr Images, by Skellie

Flickr Creative Commons page

Flickr Search page