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Re: Sinclair Genealogy

Dear Jean, sorry but I can not close this subject jet. I do have to
comment and correct you on one very important matter. If one was
prejudist one could say that you are very "American", you just see
things from the american point of view without regards to the rest of
the world and the rules of the rest of the world.

Jean Grigsby wrote:

> Perhaps you have not taken a genealogical class or been in direct contact
> with the copyright office.  VERY FEW family records are public records.

In almost every country in the world family records are public records
as long as they are 70 years old or older. The 70 years, which may vary
between different countries, is to ensure the privacy (personal
integrity) of living persons. After that the records are public and most
governments are now trying to make the records available with the help
of digital technology, databases. I know of a lot of governmental
project where the aim is to make the records accessible via Internet.

> Birth records were very rare before 1900 and the same is true with death
> records.  

This also seams to me as an American truth rather than a global one. A
lot of countries do have records from the 1500s up till now. Most of
them are parish records with special books for birth, death and
marriages. Then you have court records, also public records (from the
first day on), land records and so on, and they are all public records
in almost all places outside the US.

You also said something about "Perhaps you have not taken a genealogical
class", well I do teach genealogy classes and I also have a degree in
law (both anglosaxian and roman) and I worked for years especially with
the problems of public records and new technology.

And as for copyright, Margaret's statement and explanation was PERFECT!

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