Copyright issues
Thread poster: Sophie Holliday

Sophie Holliday  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:48
English to French
+ ...
Sep 1, 2010

Hello,

I am currently translating a document about World War 2 from English into French. In this document, you can read a letter written by an nazi officer to another officer. This letter has been used as a piece of evidence in several other dissertations or historical texts about World War 2.

I found this letter translated several times on the internet, can I use this translation (and reference it accordingly) or should I make up my own ?


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David Wright  Identity Verified
Austria
Local time: 15:48
German to English
+ ...
probably not without clearance Sep 1, 2010

The translator of the original version holds copyright. Unless it is clear that the text has been placed on the net and put in the public domain (which for instance is the case with official translations of legislation) you will probably have to acquire the copyright. This should not cost very much, but if your text becomes public and the original author finds it you or your client will be liable for a breach of copyright.

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Cristina Popescu  Identity Verified
Romania
Local time: 16:48
English to Romanian
+ ...
Local copyright law Sep 1, 2010

You may want to ask your client about this and also check what the local copyright law states. In certain countries, you may quote a limited amount of material without holding the copyright.

I hope this helps.


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Sophie Holliday  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:48
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you for your answers Sep 1, 2010

Thank you for answers. I don't feel at ease using another translation, I think I will discuss this with my client and maybe use my own translation.

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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 15:48
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
No, you can't Sep 1, 2010

Sophie Holliday wrote:
This letter has been used as a piece of evidence in several other dissertations or historical texts about World War 2.


The copyright holder of the letter is the author of the letter. If he dead during the war, however, then the copyright has probably expired.

I found this letter translated several times on the internet, can I use this translation (and reference it accordingly) or should I make up my own?


The fact that the original letter has no copyright doesn't mean the translations don't have copyright. You can only use these translations if they have been licensed for use by the purpose you need it for. Otherwise, you should make your own translation.



[Edited at 2010-09-01 14:13 GMT]


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Sophie Holliday  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:48
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you for your answer Sep 1, 2010

Yes, I will have my own translation of the document to be on the safer side.
Thank you for your answer.


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