Copyright Question Answered
Using blocks from the Electric Quilt Company's Products i
in quilts, handouts, books and other information to be published,
sold, or displayed.
Taken from the Info-EQ list, written by Penny McMorris
Editor's Note from Sharla Hicks:
I attended a quilting retreat this last year and following a discussion
about what was ok use of patterns and software, I realized the issues
surrounding copyright and how it applies to the quilter is still very
often misunderstood. When Penny McMorris, owner of Electric
Quilt Company, posted the following on the info-EQ
list I asked permission (honoring copyrighted material) if I could
add it to newsletter. Here is what Ms. McMorris has to say about Copyright
issues and her software and publications for Electric Quilt, BlockBase,
Here's the scoop from us:
Electric Quilt holds the copyright to the software, only, not the
blocks, in EQ3, BlockBase and SP. This means you may not copy the software
itself, but you may do anything you want to with the blocks, freely from
us, with the exceptions just below.
Exception #1: BlockBase contains information copyrighted by Barbara
Brackman, which get into gray areas. Barbara's Encyclopedia of Pieced
Quilt Patterns (which is the source for BlockBase) contains blocks designed
during the 1960's, 70's, and up to 1980 -- including blocks designed by
Jinny Beyer, Nancy Crow and Michael James. It's only common sense that
these blocks be reserved for your own personal use, and not be reprinted
or used in an item that is meant for sale. Nor would I use them in an
item I wanted to show and take credit for as my own design.
Exception #2: Sew Precise contains blocks in the "From our
Friends" file which were generously donated by EQ users. These blocks
should also be reserved for your own personal use, and not be reprinted
or used in an item meant for sale. And I don't think it should be shown
at a show as your own design.
The other blocks in Sew Precise and EQ are all either old blocks, or
blocks we, at EQ, have designed. We do not care what you do with them.
Reprint them, with or without permission; make a pattern and sell them
as your own. We really do not care, and will be flattered if you do so.
When quoting someone, you are free to quote (from Barb Vlack's book,
for example) without asking permission, but you should give credit to
Barb and to her book. This does not include reprinting an entire chapter,
of course, by just quoting passages, credited to Barb.
If the information is from our help files in Sew Precise, you
do not need to ask permission, or give credit, to use it.
THE BOTTOM LINE: We at EQ are free to give away our own designs.
But we are not free to give away someone else's design. So if the design
states it is by someone else, don't use it except for your own personal
use -- and give credit where credit is due. If it does not state that
the block is by someone else, it is either an old traditional design,
or our own EQ design -- use it however you would like. No permission or
credit is necessary.
This is an important distinction as we may, in the future, have other
programs with designs (not by us) in which the designer *will* hold copyright
to the designs.
What about blocks we design ourselves using EQ?
EQ is a tool. Blocks you design yourself are your own designs. These
designs would no more be copyrightable by us, than they would be by the
pencil manufacturer if you designed the block with paper and pencil. You
do not need to say you used EQ in designing the quilt -- we deserve no
credit for your design. (We do love to know though, so we can brag a bit
You also asked:
Can we copy and share the letters printed in the Digest? Many
offer good advice & info. Must we E mail request permission each time?
Yes. If you wish to share e-mail messages with others, even if they appear
in a public forum such as Info-EQ, you should request permission from
the writer first.
If I've left loose ends dangling on this issue please ask away sand I'll
be glad to tie the knot tighter so it's clearer. Good question.
The Electric Quilt Company
Back to January 1999 Computer
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