The Society is committed to respecting intellectual property rights. Members are responsible for making certain that their posts conform with these guidelines and the law.
Ownership or Permission
- Copyrighted material may be posted in eG Forums and other Society media without limitation if: the copyright is owned by the Society; the member posting such material owns the copyright; or the member posting such material has permission from the copyright owner.
- Any material that is posted with permission of the copyright owner must be accompanied by a link to the online source, where appropriate, and an attribution notice that takes this form: Copyright © John Smith, All Rights Reserved, Reproduced with Permission.
- Images may be posted in eG Forums and other Society media if: the member posting such image is the owner of the image; the member posting such image has permission from the owner of the image; the image is in the public domain; or the image has previously been posted in eG Forums discussions in compliance with these guidelines.
- Any images posted with permission of the copyright owner must be accompanied by an attribution notice that takes this form: Copyright © John Smith, all rights reserved, reproduced with permission.
- Copyrighted text may be posted up to approximately 150 words or 15% of the original work, whichever is less, for purposes of discussion, commentary and criticism.
- For multi-chapter works longer excerpts are permissible: for excerpts in excess of 500 words please contact an eG Forums Host prior to posting.
- Product images may be posted in discussion of the product in question provided a link is given to the manufacturer's website for the product, or to an online purchasing site for the product (e.g. amazon.com).
- Other images not owned by the Society, the poster, or in the public domain, must be of reduced size and quality compared to the original, and must include a link to the page the image was taken from.
- Any copyrighted material that is posted under this fair use standard must be accompanied by a link to the online source, where appropriate, and attributed as appropriate.
- Fair use is determined on a case-by-case basis: if you believe a removed post satisfied the fair use doctrine, or if you are the owner of intellectual property that you believe has been posted in violation of the fair use doctrine, please contact the Society at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Material in the public domain may be posted without limitation; however members are responsible for ascertaining that works are indeed in the public domain.
- Any material that is posted from works in the public domain should be accompanied by a notice to that effect.
A list of quantities of ingredients is not copyrightable. What is copyrightable is an author's original description of a dish or the process of making that dish. For example, you cannot copyright the idea of making a drink from 4 oz of grapefruit juice and 8 oz of sparkling water. You can, however, copyright a description of how refreshing this combination is on a hot summer afternoon. You can also copyright a detailed description of your favorite way to mix the ingredients together, and why you do it that way.
If you are like most Society members, you like to play around with recipes when you make them. Perhaps you read three or four recipes for the same dish and then construct your own using ideas from each. Posting the results of such an experiment is clearly within bounds, and is encouraged.
Suppose, however, that you make a recipe with exactly the ingredients that appear in a copyrighted recipe belonging to someone else. If you post this ingredient list, along with your own description of how you made the final dish from the ingredients, then you technically have not violated the letter of copyright law. However, we ask that you not make a habit of entering recipes in this way.
Instead, whenever a recipe you enter is based on or inspired by someone else's recipe, we hope that you will acknowledge the source or your inspiration in the recipe's introduction. Something simple like, "This is based on Mark Bittman's recipe, but I use more peanut butter than he does, and I also add jalapenos, which I think makes all the difference in the world." Doing so acknowledges both the source of your inspiration and your own innovation in respectful ways.
This policy, which is incorporated by reference in the Society for Culinary Arts & Letters member agreement, was last updated in July 2012.