Book Review: If You Knew Google like She Knows Google . . . .

The Genealogist ‘s Google Toolbox, by Lisa Louise Cooke (2011) If we were all in junior high school, I doubt that anyone would hang the moniker “Geek Girl” on Lisa Louise Cooke.  She just seems so socially well-adjusted.  But there has to be a little bit of  geek  in anybody who could write such a clear and cogent guide to …Continue reading →


QwikTip: Finding Your Ne’er-Do-Well Ancestors and Relatives

Here’s  a quick way and inexpensive way  that you  might find out about your felonious ancestors and relatives: 1.  Go to Google Books, and type in “State  v. [name]” and see what comes up.  Try these variations: For some states, type in “People versus [name]” For Pennsylvania, Kentucky and Virginia, “Commonwealth v. [name]” For British, old Canadian, and old Australian …Continue reading →


Around the Research Circle

I’m doing some hard genealogy that I’ll write about very soon. But I had an interesting experience this evening:  I was trying to track down some information about Marydale Plantation in Tensas Parish Louisiana.  I went first to Google and listed among the results was a bookmark on for Marydale Plantation!   Placed there by me . . . I …Continue reading →


Research Resource: Magazines Join Google Books

Google announced earlier this month that they now have online an archive of various magazines’ content.   This is just the first iteration of an initiative that will bring online millions of page of magazine content.  The initiative is being carried out with the cooperation of publishers. The magazines are searchable through Google Book Search and eventually will turn up in …Continue reading →



What technology is indispensable to me as a genealogist and family historian? Well, don’t expect any big surprises here–my indispensable choices are rather pedestrian. Hardware: My 2GB thumb drive is invaluable. It makes my data portable and it’s a decent backup. Software: Okay, I know I’ll seem like a caveman, but for me it’s got to be PAF 5.2. I’ve …Continue reading →


Some Final Thoughts on "Did Ancestry Violate Copyright Law?"

I think an analysis of the statutory “fair use” factors can lead to the conclusion that’s “Internet Biographical Collection” as it was initially set up, did not constitute a fair use of the copyrighted material collected and used. I think that Ancestry’s IBC probably does not qualify for the system caching “safe harbor” for infringement in the Digital Millennium …Continue reading →


Did Ancestry Violate Copyright Law?. . . . It Depends. . . .Part 4 of 4

Here are some important observations before we go on: (1) Ancestry’s IBC is operationally unlike Google’s search engine. “Fair use” and direct infringement cases are highly fact-specific. (2) Whether Google’s search engine is or is not “fair use” has yet to be considered adequatelyby a court because: The Field case involves unique facts (i.e., the plaintiff “set up” Google to …Continue reading →


Did Ancestry Violate Copyright Law? . . . . Part 3of 4: Fair Use

We’ve explored the Field v. Google, Inc., case thus far and learned about the facts of that case and some of the holdings. A number of commenters have insisted (and still insist) that because the court found Google’s caching to be “fair use,” the same result would obtain with respect to Ancestry’s Internet Biographical Collection. I do believe that the …Continue reading →


Part 3 of Legal Analysis Temporarily Delayed

It’ll be here later today. I have to add a few things and I got busy with my first priority–my students!


Did Ancestry Violate Copyright Law? . . . . Part 2 of 4

Before we get to the heart of the legal analysis, here are some additional facts which may be legally significant. They were provided in the Comments to yesterday’s post by Janice Brown of Cow Hampshire. Janice first called my attention to this issue in late August. Ancestry also provided an option (to subscribers only, and even after IBC became “free”) …Continue reading →

August 2015
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