Talk:Statute of Anne

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Good article Statute of Anne has been listed as one of the Social sciences and society good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
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March 3, 2012 Good article nominee Listed
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Note on dates[edit]

This page [[1]] states that 1709 is listed by many sources but that it is wrong and that the act was not *published* until 1710. It references a book. Anyone care to take it out of the library and enlighten us, or should I just change it?

Note: At the time of access, the bulk of the page was a copy of the entire document. It has since been moved to Wikisource. Lotsofissues 12:07, 23 Apr 2005 (UTC)

The article currently says the Act was:

  • enacted in 1709 and entering into force on April 10, 1710.

Aren't these two dates the wrong way round? For Acts written before the Acts of Parliament (Commencement) Act 1793, the date of coming into force should be back dated to the first day of the Parliamentary session in which it was enacted. Therefore it would make more sense if the line said;

Does anyone have any comments about this? Road Wizard 19:09, 25 May 2006 (UTC)

Correct citation?[edit]

According to the Chronological Table of the Statutes (HMSO), this Act is chapter 21 not chapter 19. James500 (talk) 14:00, 26 November 2008 (UTC)

Copyright in Historical Perspective (p. 3 Fn. 3) says c. 19. Not sure how to figure out who's right. Rl (talk) 15:06, 26 November 2008 (UTC)
There isn't really a "right" answer - it depends on how you count. c.21 is derived from "statutes of the realm" whereas c.19 is from Ruffhead's edition. The CTS gives both as alternatives though it uses c.21 in its table and footnotes the c.19. Francis Davey (talk) 23:45, 5 November 2012 (UTC)
I have now given both forms of citation, and added an explanatory note. As Francis Davey notes, and as I have tried to make clear, neither is "wrong"; but I have given priority to the c. 21 version, as that is slightly more authoritative. GrindtXX (talk) 12:30, 12 August 2015 (UTC)

Calendar note[edit]

The calendar note is a bit discursive, is there a way to drop all of it into the footnotes? Sumergocognito (talk) 20:41, 6 August 2009 (UTC)

Citations Needed[edit]

Can anyone add some citations (yes, I know it's already flagged). The most crucial need is to verify some information. Of particular interest to this user is the list of nine supposed recipients of copyrighted materials.

Today there are only six in the UK: British Library, Bodleian (Oxford), Cambridge, Scottish and Welsh Nat'l Libraries and Trinity College Dublin. It seems odd there would have been more in 1710. Not disputing, just needs confirmation by reference. Thanks. --gobears87 (talk) 14:38, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

Agreed. It does not seem to be supported by either reference provided in the article. I tagged the claim in question. Rl (talk) 09:40, 29 December 2009 (UTC)
ARRRGGHH. Someone has taken out the legal deposit portion entirely! Now there is zero information relating to this subject and the article only covers copyright itself, and not legal deposit. SO frustrating. Why?? Wish users would at least mention their major edits in discussions, here, as most good users do!!!! (It appears not to have been you, R1, as far as I can tell.) Can anyone put the information back? Or is there a new legal deposit history page I have not yet seen?!?! Signed, Grumpy in UK --gobears87 (talk) 10:58, 5 November 2010 (UTC)
Update - I believe the editor was one SasiSasi who has not learned to use the preview apparently as they continually add small edits to their changes and create a history that is ridiculously full of minor edits, none of which have edit summaries or explanations on this page. Additionally, I believe this sentence in the 'Substance' section should be updated/changed as it is doubtful that it is correct as written: "The requirement for copies of published books to be deposited in university libraries ensured that there was public access to copyrighted works.[5]". There may have been requirements for deposits at universities, but not generally, only specifically named libraries (which have been removed from this article!). Poor editing without substantiation is annoying at best and horribly rude & ignorant at worst. --gobears87 (talk) 11:11, 5 November 2010 (UTC)
Gobears87, they are set out in the statute: the respective libraries of the two English and four Scottish universities, plus Sion College and the King's Library in London, and the Faculty of Advocates in Edinburgh. (You could revert the edit if you like? Perhaps the editor felt the subject deserves a separate article?) Jezza (talk) 16:01, 11 April 2011 (UTC)

Section Needs Changing: Copying the Copyright Act[edit]

This line from the article seems dubious:

The act covered not only books, but also maps and charts. With exception of the provision on maps and charts the Copyright Act of 1790 is copied almost verbatim from the Statute of Anne.

I took a quick look at the and pages and didn't some quick text searches. I can't find any similar lines. Unless I'm doing it wrong, would someone consider removing this section? --CGPGrey (talk) 14:13, 15 August 2011 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Statute of Anne/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Cwmhiraeth (talk · contribs) 12:07, 29 February 2012 (UTC)

I propose to start reviewing this article in the next few days and welcome comments from other editors. Cwmhiraeth (talk) 12:07, 29 February 2012 (UTC)

Rate Attribute Review Comment
1. Well written:
1a. the prose is clear and concise, and the spelling and grammar are correct. The few points mentioned below have now been dealt with.
1b. it complies with the manual of style guidelines for lead sections, layout, words to watch, fiction, and list incorporation. Layout and section headings are appropriate.
2. Verifiable with no original research:
2a. it contains a list of all references (sources of information), presented in accordance with the layout style guideline. It is well referenced.
2b. all in-line citations are from reliable sources, including those for direct quotations, statistics, published opinion, counter-intuitive or controversial statements that are challenged or likely to be challenged, and contentious material relating to living persons—science-based articles should follow the scientific citation guidelines. As far as I can see, sources are reliable.
2c. it contains no original research. Not that I can see.
3. Broad in its coverage:
3a. it addresses the main aspects of the topic. It deals with different aspects of the topic in a proportionate way.
3b. it stays focused on the topic without going into unnecessary detail (see summary style). It deals with different aspects of the topic in a proportionate way.
4. Neutral: it represents viewpoints fairly and without editorial bias, giving due weight to each. The Stationers' Company might not think so!
5. Stable: it does not change significantly from day to day because of an ongoing edit war or content dispute.
6. Illustrated, if possible, by images:
6a. images are tagged with their copyright status, and valid fair use rationales are provided for non-free content. Images are appropriately licensed.
6b. images are relevant to the topic, and have suitable captions. Images are relevant and add visual interest to the article.
7. Overall assessment.

Initial comments[edit]

In general the prose is clear and well-written. There are a few small points that I noticed however:

  • It would be helpful if the lead included information on why the act was called the "Statute of Anne". Readers may ask "Who is Anne?"
    Done! Ironholds (talk) 17:53, 1 March 2012 (UTC)
  • In the section "Act: Text", paragraph 2, there is an extraneous "libraries".
    Done. Ironholds (talk) 17:53, 1 March 2012 (UTC)
  • In the same section, paragraph 3, there is a contradictory statement about the length of time for which copyright will be granted.
    Where's the contradiction? Ironholds (talk) 17:53, 1 March 2012 (UTC)
    It states "If it was published before 10 April 1710, the length of copyright was 14 years; if published before that date, 21 years."
    Argh. Headdesk. Okay, fixed :). Ironholds (talk) 22:56, 1 March 2012 (UTC)
  • In "Aftermath: Impact", the last sentence in paragraph 1 is ungrammatical. Cwmhiraeth (talk) 11:57, 1 March 2012 (UTC)
    How, specifically? It's nearly 6pm, so I may be being dense :). Ironholds (talk) 17:53, 1 March 2012 (UTC)
    I meant the sentence ending "... also undermining this provision." On further consideration, the sentence is awkward rather than ungrammatical. Perhaps it could be rephrased. Cwmhiraeth (talk) 06:06, 2 March 2012 (UTC)(UTC)
    I have now rewritten the particular sentence to which I was referring. The article passes all the GA criteria in my view. Cwmhiraeth (talk) 13:23, 3 March 2012 (UTC)
    Thanks for the rewrite, and thanks for the review :). Ironholds (talk) 17:44, 3 March 2012 (UTC)

Edit war over the use of the term "copyright"[edit]

User:CurtisNeeley has been making systematic edits to remove the term "copyright" from the earlier parts of the article under the mistaken impression (so far as I can gather) that the term "copyright" was not used outside US law until 1842. Not so. I haven't done an exhaustive trawl through the sources, but Blackstone uses the term in 1766. Can we have some common-sense here? Unless we have a good reason to avoid the use of the term "copyright" before some cut-off date (clearly earlier than 1766) then we need a source for that cut-off and some discussion as to the terminology to use. Many of the alternatives were simply wrong. Francis Davey (talk) 23:13, 27 November 2012 (UTC)

I see the term copyright used in the Blackstone link and am sure it was used first in print between 1710 and 1766 but not in a Statute. I will not further edit this article but will also not use it as an encyclopedia regarding copy[rite]. Thank you for the source. I was wrong. Sorry. What was the first Statute to use the term? That should be a simple fact to discover and I still believe it was 1790 and was in the US. A good reason to not use the term copy[rite] like spelled in US law is that it has never been a personal right in the US and was and still is only misuse of the the combination of the publication ritual or rite for copying original art and is only a license to sue and has never protected a personal right like the rest of the civilized Earth recognizes. CurtisNeeley (talk) 05:21, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

I don't have a searchable database of GB and UK statutes for that period to hand, but it would be an interesting thing to find out. Francis Davey (talk) 08:59, 28 November 2012 (UTC)
According to Ronan Deazley, the first reference to the term in Parliament was a petition submitted on 2 February 1710 - the first bill was The Bill for the better Encouragement of Learning, and for the more effectual securing the Copies of Printed Books to the Authors or Purchasers of such Copies, during the Times therein mentioned, which had a first reading on 26 March 1735. Never passed, however :/ Ironholds (talk) 12:03, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

I found no searchable database but manually went through every UK source file listed at from 1709-1769 and I can say that Sir William Blackstone was the first person who used the compound word "copyright" without the hyphen. Book II Chapter 26 is text searchable from Repeated usage of the hyphenated term copy-right was found in the 118 images of pages that were not text searchable of Miller v Taylor, London (1769). uk_1769_2.pdf(8/30, 11/30, 13/30 16/30, 20/30) used as copy-right 23/30 Justice Blacktone moral rights mentioned as perpetual 25/61 author compared to inventor uk_1769_3.pdf1/30, 3/30, 5/30, 6/30, 9/30, 12/30, 21/30 p2397 copy discussed as an "act" verb and "item" noun 30/30 p2399 author who repents and is ashamed of prior work

Was it original research to simply read the sources referred to after a request to use common sense? The fact that the United States does not recognize a personal moral right WAS original research that cost nearly a million in legal fees. Western District of Arkansas Docket Report I can't add it. The lack of personal moral rights was ruled in Dkt 233. This incorrect ruling was the ONLY use of 17 USC 106A EVER for photography and this is why I am offended at the United States as well as ANYONE's use of copy[rite] spelled as it is properly done [sic]"copyright" in the UK in text FIRST in 1766 and in laws first in 1842. Most of the Earth now realizes this though citizenry of the US has been mislead since 1790. This fact is reading sources and recognizing simple facts. CurtisNeeley (talk) 21:14, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

  • The (old) OED gives Blackwell in 1767 as first use, followed by James Boswell in his Life of Johnson pub 1791. Johnbod (talk) 21:38, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

Clear linguistic error in most copy[rite] [sic]"copyright" articles here at Wiki.[edit]

I found no searchable database but manually went through every UK source file listed at from 1709-1769 and can say it is obvious that Sir William Blackstone was the first person who used the compound word "copyright" without the hyphen in Book II Chapter 26 as is text searchable from

Usage of the hyphenated term copy-right was found repeatedly in the 118 images of pages that were not text searchable of Miller v Taylor, London (1769). uk_1769_1.pdf on page 12 of the PDF discussion it is recorded as follows.

"It is remarkable, that the decree of the Star-Chamber in 1637 expressly presupposes a copy-right to exist otherwise than by patent, order, or entry in the register of the Stationers Company : which could only be by Common law"

Italics are reproduced as shown in the text. The decree of the Star Chamber from uk_1637_1.pdf does not, in fact, include usage of the term "copy-right" though the Common law right to copy is discussed.

  • The (old) OED gives Blackwell in 1767 as first use, followed by James Boswell in his Life of Johnson pub 1791. Johnbod (talk) 21:38, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

The above reference may be correct for the UK exclusively but the Copyright_Act_of 1790 would precede Life of Johnson pub 1791.

I will not adjust this article but suggest that a more qualified person begin correcting to preserve the basic facts required upheld by an encyclopedia. The first time on Earth the right of an artist to control original visual art and have rights protected from the publisher craft was not done here but was the Engraver's Act from 1735. This was the first use on Earth of artists rights later included in the Berne Compact. This World Copyright Agreement is still violated by the United States Despite alleging to agree and signing the Treaty. CurtisNeeley (talk) 04:54, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

  • There were earlier laws in early 16th century Nuremburg and Venice, maybe elsewhere - Durer & Titian respectively were influential in bringing them in. I can point you to some books if needed. Johnbod (talk) 05:08, 29 November 2012 (UTC)
  • I'm confused as to what's being requested here. Is it that we start calling it copy-right, or copyrite, in all articles pre-Blackstone? If so, I'm going to say "no"; copyright is the commonly understood term. I didn't write Dr. Bonham's Case in Early Modern English for a similar

reason. Ironholds (talk) 12:19, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

I am aware of numerous written laws that are much older as the rite of publishing evolved into the right to control copies of original intellectual property. In GB it started as a way to control mass communication back when these did not exist in North America and the United States did not yet exist. I disagree adamantly when you say [sic]"copyright is a commonly understood term". The term is one of the least understood legal terms on Earth. In the UK and in much of the rest of the civilized Earth [sic]"copyright" is is a clear compound word of "copy" and "right". In the United States, TODAY [sic]"copyright" remains the compound words "copy" and "rite" but is commonly misspelled [sic]"copyright" for political reasons. In the United States [sic]"copyright" does not recognize a single personal right like recognized by hundreds of countries around the Earth who are honest Berne Convention signatories. The United States is included as a signatory but is not Berne Convention compliant and does not recognize Article 6bis.

Europe or Germany is prepared to require that GOOG begin paying for "snippets" sold when used without permission to report news etc.See from Germany here. In United States copy[rite] law has always meant one thing for attorneys and another thing for the common citizenry. GOOG and BING exist exclusively because of the United States' confusion over the term copy[rite]. This will soon change. Neeley Jr v FCC, et al, (5:12-cv-5208) It is odd that European Newspapers do not just sue GOOG for violating the laws that already exist. The backwards and improper fair-use law of the US does not apply internationally. No jury on Earth, including in the United States, will allow theft of content to continue like is exclusively why GOOG exists. I will not again cite as a source in legal filings and will continue to battle in United States Courts and return here after I am done and Neeley Jr v FCC, et al becomes encyclopedia worthy. Just wait a few days and get rid of all this mess. Sorry to have bugged anyone.CurtisNeeley (talk) 19:07, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

Okay. Ironholds (talk) 23:51, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

Usefulness of references?[edit]

Well written, informative, and helpful article, but the current citations are largely useless to the vast majority of Wikipedia readers: most people in the world do not have access to law school libraries. Not that these references should be removed, but perhaps more accessible resources could be identified for the rest of us. Belastro (talk) 15:08, 19 December 2014 (UTC)

I've added some more external links; generally-speaking though, it's hard to find web-based, open resources on the law that are as reliable as the textbooks. As a field we lag behind, say, Computer Science on that front :(. Ironholds (talk) 00:56, 20 December 2014 (UTC)
On behalf of the wider community, I appreciate your response. IMHO, for a healthy democracy, all resources on the law should be open. Thanks for your effort. Belastro (talk) 03:07, 20 December 2014 (UTC)

Copyright Act 1709 or 1710?[edit]

The Wikipedia article says it's called Copyright Act 1710, but according to Wikisource it's called Copyright Act 1709. Which is the correct year? We should harmonize across wikis. Qzekrom (talk) 20:33, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

The Copyright history source says that 1710 is correct. Francis Davey (talk) 18:57, 4 April 2017 (UTC)
Prior to the passage of the Acts of Parliament (Commencement) Act 1793, Acts of Parliament were deemed to have come into force on the first day of the session in which they were passed (a legal fiction). In reality, they came into force at the point at which they received the royal assent. This issue of conflicting dates therefore come up regularly (some other examples are given in the Commencement Act article). In the present case, the parliamentary session began in 1709, but the bill actually passed through parliament and received the royal assent in 1710. The traditional way of citing the act in legal contexts was 1709; but many modern historians prefer to use the technically more accurate date 1710. Neither form is incorrect, and both will be found in reliable sources: it's just a matter of which convention we follow. Personally I'd vote for 1710, which – as far as this article goes – is the date we currently use. GrindtXX (talk) 22:06, 4 April 2017 (UTC)