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Making Connections: Photo Copyright, Immigration Collection
Readers respond to Family Tree Magazine.

Pictures of Frustration

After reading Maureen A. Taylor's article about copyright laws (Now What?, June 2004), I had to respond. A month ago, my husband and I took our family photos down to our local Wal-Mart and made some copies of late-1800s and early-1900s photos for my heritage album. We spent well over an hour doing this, only to be told by the green-haired, nose-pierced 17-year-old clerk that we couldn't have the copies! Watching the horror on my husband's face as she took the duplicated photos of his Lebanese great-great-grandmother and put them in the shredder, I asked for the manager. It is Wal-Mart's policy that, regardless of copyright law, the store will not let you make a copy until 75 years after the picture was taken, unless you have written permission from the photographer.

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