The Haiku Foundation’s Policies
Below are our policies and code of conduct. For any questions regarding these policies, please feel free to contact us.
We want our site to be the kind of place where people can have spirited discussions and yet still be considerate of each other. That is the example set by the participants on The Haiku Foundation blog, and that is the kind of community that we want to promote in all of our discussion areas. If questions arise as to what is and what is not appropriate in our discussion areas, we hope the following guidelines will provide answers.
- All views expressed on The Haiku Foundation web site are the views of the authors. They are not necessarily the views of The Haiku Foundation.
- Your participation in our discussion areas is contingent upon your interacting in a friendly manner with the community. We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone, for any reason, at any time.
- If you habitually present a poem or other work as yours, yet it bears too close a resemblance to the work of others, you will be warned and could be banned from participating on our site.
- Flaming of moderators will not be tolerated. They are volunteers offering an important service to us all. Flaming a moderator will get you banned without warning for one month. If it happens again, you will be banned for a year.
- Comments should be diplomatic and respectful. Please attempt to make your comments constructive and of the type that you would like to hear yourself.
- Moderators have the ability to warn or ban people who are violating The Haiku Foundation Code of Conduct. We hope that it won’t be necessary to do this. Again, be respectful of the community members and The Haiku Foundation helpers and this should not be a problem. Moderators and the Board retain final say regarding any and all conflicts and their resolution.
- Comments that are abusive, offensive or obnoxious may be deleted without warning or consultation. The author of such a comment may be warned or banned as determined by a moderator. The Haiku Foundation is not responsible for deleted material, posts, images, poems, comments or any other written material that may or may not have value to you or others.
- Please stay on topic. (Moderators may comment regarding conduct on a thread but all other members should stay on topic.) Off topic posts may be removed without warning. If a thread needs to be removed, moderators, generally, will give a 24 hours notice of such intention. If the thread is bad enough, they can and will remove it immediately without warning.
- While we encourage spirited discussions, please be tolerant of other’s positions and feelings. We all have our opinions. There is nothing to win by winning an argument here.
- Protests and the like are against The Haiku Foundation policy. This is not a political forum.
- Spam or comments posted repeatedly in a thread or multiple threads on the same topic, links unrelated to the thread subject, and other actions deemed spam by our moderators may be deleted without notice or warning.
- No advertising. Please do not post threads designed to drive traffic to another thread for the purpose of promotion or personal gain.
- Signatures should be no more than 300 characters.
- No ban evasion or multiple accounts are allowed. This will result in a permanent ban.
- If you end up in what appears to be an irresolvable problem with another member, please let it go. There is nothing to be accomplished by continuing on and it might end up getting you warned and/or banned.
- Do not harass, stalk or verbally abuse another member.
- Do not troll or consistently attempt to cause community unrest.
- Do not ignore moderator requests. This will result in warning and/or ban.
- Be careful of your use of explicit language as a few of the areas of the forum are open to public viewing and therefore, minors.
- Please do not solicit personal information from members under the age of 18.
Warning / Ban Process
When members break the rules, they will first receive a warning. Next, they will receive a one week ban. Following that, a one month ban. Lastly, they will be banned for one year or possibly for life. The decisions of moderators and or staff are final. Under certain conditions, as determined by a moderator and/or staff, a ban can be used as the initial step of The Haiku Foundation action – bypassing the warning stage altogether. Flaming a moderator will cause an immediate one month ban without warning. A second offense will cause a one year ban.
The Haiku Foundation does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its activities or operations. These activities include, but are not limited to, hiring and firing of staff, selection of volunteers and vendors, and provision of services.
The Haiku Foundation’s primary concerns regarding intellectual property rights are to ensure that all poets, artists and authors who make contributions on behalf of the Foundation receive due credit for their work, and retain control over how that work is to be dispersed in the future. We therefore provide this simple guide to what guarantees these contributors may expect from the Foundation.
You may expect that all content that appears under our domain (thehaikufoundation.org) does so by consent of the poets and artists whenever that is possible, and when that is not possible (as in the case of a deceased poet without literary executor), does so within our understanding of fair use (see below). All content that is generated by the Foundation is copyright © 2008-2019 by The Haiku Foundation. All rights reserved.
In accordance with the Berne Convention, your work is automatically copyrighted in your name by virtue of your having created it. You retain all rights to any of this work that appears on The Haiku Foundation website, or in other publications or presentations sponsored by the Foundation. If we have obtained your permission to feature your content in one context, such as our blog, and we wish to use it in another context, such as an anthology, we’ll ask your permission. No contributor content will be used for purposes of profit, though it may be used (with your permission) for fundraising activities of the Foundation.
All content offered by The Haiku Foundation is presented with the premise that all rights are reserved, and then returned to the owner(s) of those rights. We do not offer partial rights, as this would require individual contracts with every contributor to the Foundation, which is beyond our capacities of personnel and resources. Owners of these rights are free, of course, to feature their work in other contexts, such as their own blogs, under any rights arrangement that suits them.
Copyright and Fair Use
Fair use remains a grey area for literature, and no individual case of fair use is harder to determine than one relating to the reprinting of haiku. Until a definitive legal ruling under United States law is handed down, we will try to strike a balance between fair use and copyright.
You may send a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) notice, a DMCA counter-notification, or any inquiries concerning intellectual property to The Haiku Foundation’s Copyright Agent.
- Copyright Agent: Dave Russo
- Address: 108 Cavendish Drive, Cary, NC 27513, USA
- Phone: 1 (919) 228-8288
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Assignment of Copyright License
Please read the following to understand what this document is, and how and when to use it.
How you preserve your work for posterity is one of the most important decisions you’ll make as a poet. It’s not something people generally like to discuss, but not discussing it leaves it in the hands of others. Even if those others care about you, there is no guarantee that they will know exactly what you have in mind, nor that they will be able to effect your wishes legally without your intentions having been clearly expressed in writing. The Haiku Foundation would like to help you arrange your situation exactly as you would have it. That’s why we have spent more than a year researching the issue and crafting the terms in which we might be able to help you realize your goals.
I come to this topic the hard way: from close recent experience where consequences were at best difficult, and at worst, totally negative. As you might know, I recently completed work on a large anthology of haiku, now published as Haiku in English: The First Hundred Years. For the final 18 months of that project I was primarily concerned with securing permissions to reprint the materials I had selected. In the course of this work I had been asked by my publisher to contact either the poets themselves or their publishing houses, whichever held the rights to these selections. In many instances this was a simple matter because either the poet was living and we could negotiate directly, or else because the poet’s interests had been legally turned over to a representative, most usually the poet’s publishing house, but occasionally an heir or literary executor.
In some instances, however, none of these things was the case, and that’s when things became much, much more complicated. I would like to take, for purposes of illustration, the situation of Foster Jewell.
Foster Jewell was a leading haiku poet of the 1960s and ’70s, operated a much-respected publishing house (Sangre de Cristo Press in Venice, California), appeared in all the early English-language dedicated journals as well as in all three editions of Cor van den Heuvel’s The Haiku Anthology. Foster Jewell was central to the early development of English-language haiku in the United States, and, simply put, he deserved to appear in my anthology. As to his willingness, the fact that he had appeared in other anthologies is at least suggestive that he was inclined to have his work promoted in such ways.
The problem, however, is that Foster Jewell left no indication of what he wished to happen with his literary estate. He did not have a literary executor, did not leave his own written instructions, and my several serious attempts at locating an heir or relative discovered nothing. As a consequence, Foster Jewell’s literary work, and future, were left in limbo.
Faced with the situation, the publisher’s lawyers did what they were paid to do—they identified this to be a potential risk to the company, and they balked at his inclusion. They demanded further proof that Foster Jewell would have wanted to appear in this volume, and since I couldn’t very well ask him, such proof seemed very unlikely.
As it turns out, I had a bit of luck: Haiku in English had the same publisher (W. W. Norton) as the third edition of The Haiku Anthology. Jewell had granted written permission to appear in it, so the publishing house actually had on file a record of Jewell’s previous willingness to be anthologized. This little bit of serendipity, along with the records of my searches, was enough to persuade the lawyers that publishing Foster Jewell in Haiku in English would constitute no real risk to W. W. Norton.
What would have been the consequence of not having such good fortune? At the least, a deserving poet would not have taken his place in an anthology that is designed to feature exactly the sorts of contributions that Jewell had made. And, presuming that Haiku in English does indeed become the basis of a reconsideration of the history of the genre, as I hope and intend it to be, it means his omission would potentially figure largely in future decisions about inclusion in anthologies—some future editor would actually have to rediscover him and make a case for him. And, at that point, they would still be in the same position I found myself, without an heir or literary executor to grant permission, and also likely not having the good fortune of having the same publisher as his last such appearance.
None of this needed to happen. It’s not lawyers, but poets, who are to blame in such instances. If Foster Jewell had appointed a literary executor, or left some indication in his will of his intentions, there would never have been any question of his inclusion, in my volume, and in the subsequent volumes that are sure to come over time. If Foster Jewell would have been left out, it would have been his own fault. But it would have affected all of us.
Of course, Jewell was not the only such case. This story was repeated many more times, and not always with such a happy and fortuitous ending. The purpose of my recalliing this is to make certain such a situation doesn’t happen to you.
I would like to suggest that you make your intentions known now—it’s never too early. If you don’t have a literary executor but would like one, get started. Do the research. Find out who you would like to entrust with this important task. Here are a couple places to start: Do-You-Need-a-Literary-Executor? and How-to-Choose-Literary-Executors.
Or perhaps you simply want to include this information in your will. Be sure to spell it out—if you don’t, others will need to do it for you. If you want people to be able to publish your work when you can no longer decide, you need to say so, and under what circumstances. The more specific you can be, the better.
What The Haiku Foundation Can Do
To these two excellent options, I would like to add a third. The Haiku Foundation, in collaboration with Spotts Fain, a law office in Richmond, Virginia, has created an Assignment of Copyright License. This document guarantees that your work will remain available for publication after such a time as you can decide in person. In effect, it gives the Foundation the authority to grant permission to reproduce your work.
The Foundation is not an agency, and will not seek publication for your work. And we are not staffed by lawyers, so we lack the ability to enter into complicated legal arrangements with individual poets. But the Foundation can and will hold rights on an individual poet’s behalf, and make certain that your work is not ignored (as might have happened to Foster Jewell) or misused (such as being used without permission, or without correct attribution). By holding your rights with the Foundation, you make the discovery of your intentions much simpler for future scholars and publishers.
You will see that the document is designed to favor these intentions: all copyrights, and therefore all reprinting rights, reside with you, or with your designated heir or literary executor. By signing this document, in the event that you do not designate an heir or literary executor, or if that heir or executor cannot be located, the Foundation becomes the de facto executor. When a publisher or editor then wishes to reprint your material, there will be a legal entity to represent your rights, and a legally acceptable way to guarantee that your work may be considered. The document also specifies the manner in which your work can be thus considered. Best of all, The Haiku Foundation is a known and trusted advocate for haiku, and will not seek a fee for representing you.
Our goal is that in the future, poets, not lawyers, will decide who gets included in the next big anthology, and that your rights as a poet are honored. We believe an Assignment of Copyright is one way to meet that challenge. If you agree that this plan best suits your needs, please fill out the form and return it to us.
I hope you will find this service eases your mind about your poetic bequest to posterity. I know it will make the creation of future anthologies and other offerings much simpler to research and implement. I only wish it had been available in time for Haiku in English.
Thank you for your consideration, and feel free to contact us about this, or any other haiku matter, at any time.
The Haiku Foundation