Printing my blog

4 03 2013

The 1st of March 2013 was my fourth anniversary of writing this blog and my 1000th post – I know!!

To celebrate, I have been thinking about printing by blog to a book. I like the idea of having a ‘paper’ record of my writings and photographs, I like the idea of holding it in my hands.

In the month prior to this milestone, I’ve done a bit of reading about this feat, and the options seemed to be the following:

  • Blog2Print: I was all keen to set this up but upon reading their terms and conditions of ‘registering‘ to use the website to create the book content, I didn’t want to hand over rights to reproduce without consent; even though my blog is mostly covered by Creative Commons, there are some images I request readers to ask permission for reproduction (yes, even though it is only in respect of marketing etc)
    With respect to any User Content posted by or in connection with the Products and Services, you grant SharedBook and its affiliates and sub-licensees a nonexclusive, royalty free, perpetual, irrevocable and fully sub-licensable right and license (the “Sharedbook User Content License”) to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, transmit, publicly display, create compilations including, create derivative works of, and distribute such User Content throughout the world but only in connection with SharedBook’s marketing, use and operation of the SharedBook Sites. Such Sharedbook User Content License shall apply with respect to any form, format, media, or technology now known or later developed
  • Momento: I have used this software before to make a photo-book; I like that they make no copyright claims over user content; however there is no automatic ‘suck-in’ of blog content, and it looks too hard to bring in so much text. That said, I’d absolutely recommend them for simple photo collation books.
  • Blurb: This was written about as an alternative to Blog2Print; checking their terms and conditions it seems that they are not claiming any licence rights over my content other than to print the book I create:
    8.4.1 License to print your Books. You hereby grant to Blurb a non-exclusive, worldwide, fully-paid and royalty-free license (a “License”) to reproduce and distribute your Book Content for the purpose of printing the Books that you order or that you authorize for purchase by others, and for any other related purpose that you authorize (including the use by other Members as a contribution to their Books). ….
    8.4.2 License to use your Book Content for optional Blurb features. In the event you decide to use any optional feature that Blurb may offer, … , you hereby grant to Blurb a License to reproduce, distribute, publicly display, use, and otherwise make available the designated Book(s), any Book Content therein, and any other data and information you provide in connection with the optional feature, as required for Blurb to provide such optional feature.

    10. Other Content. You hereby grant to Blurb an irrevocable, perpetual, nonexclusive, fully-paid and royalty-free license (with right to sublicense) to use, create derivative works, reproduce, distribute and publicly display any Content, other than your Book Content, that you upload, post, email, transmit or otherwise make available on the Website or App (“Other Content”).
  • I found this post which discusses a few other options, including a site that prints web pages … but that doesn’t really suit this purpose

So … at this stage I was leaning towards Blurb. I gave it a go, and it failed twice after importing the photos (just had a spaz after importing the many photos and shut down). Bummer. Will need to do more research I fear.

THEN I found this post via a WordPress forum; this had lots of new options including:

  • FastPencil: checking their terms of service: “FastPencil claims no ownership or control over any User Content submitted, posted or displayed by you on or through FastPencil Services. You or a third party licensor, as appropriate, retain all patent, trademark and copyright to any Content you submit, post or display on or through FastPencil services and you are responsible for protecting those rights, as appropriate. By submitting, posting or displaying Content on or through FastPencil services which are intended to be available to the members of the public, you grant FastPencil a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free license to reproduce, adapt, modify, publish and distribute such User Content on the FastPencil Services for the purpose of displaying, distributing and promoting FastPencil Services.” – think I’m happy with that
  • Lulu: checking their legals: “you will retain ownership of such Content. You hereby grant us and our designees a worldwide, non-exclusive, sub-licensable (through multiple tiers), assignable, royalty-free (except as otherwise agreed during the online publishing process) right to use, reproduce, distribute (through multiple tiers) and publicly display such Content, solely in connection with the Site” – not so sure, but at least they’re not claiming right to make derivative works; further though, Lulu looks like it doesn’t slurp blog content but accepts already existing PDF files for publishing…
  • BlogBooker: doesn’t actually print a book but collates the blog into a PDF file; I notice that Lulu is the preferred printing partner of BlogBooker and that Lulu is a partner of Creative Commons

After this additional reading, I’ve thought more about the use of my content and realise that my blog is out there in the world as it is, and therefore as long as ‘derivative’ works aren’t included in the legal blurb I think I can be okay about content being used for promotional purposes. Frankly, the connection of Lulu to Creative Commons is a really big tick for me, so I think I’ll investigate that and BlogBooker further.

Part two of this saga tomorrow….



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