I have received more than a few comments about why I chose not to post magazine and cookbook recipes directly to my site, but instead post links back to the source. This is a topic that I feel very strongly about. When I first started reviewing recipes on this site I thought long and hard how I wanted my blog to be set-up. I have an undergraduate degree in English Literature from University of Washington and for four years straight it was drilled into my head in almost every class that to copy someones work is grounds for being kicked out of not only a class, but the entire university. I was actually accused of plagiarism by a professor for re-wording a sentence completely, but still having the idea behind the sentence taken from another source. Luckily I fought the charge in front of a committee, but I still had to re-write the paper. To this day that experience has had a profound effect on my opinions on intellectual property.
So what does this have to do with this blog? Since I am actually reviewing recipes from another source and doing so by completely following the recipe with few modifications that means that I am in no way creating my own work. Further if I was to copy the instructions of a recipe (which are indeed copyrighted) I would be infringing on that sites intellectual property and therefore I would be open to being sued by that company (such as a magazine or cookbook).
Don't a lot of other bloggers just re-print recipes? Yes, they do and they would in-fact be committing copyright infringement for doing so. A lot of bloggers will say that they changed the wording slightly so therefore they are safe. Well, that would be open to interpretation and I am not comfortable with getting sued and having to defend myself. I chose to take it one step further and not print any part of the recipe. Since I print at least five recipes a week from another source that puts me at a greater risk of being noticed for copyright infringement. Plus I have a strong feeling that to do so is wrong to me in multiple ways, I wouldn't want someone to take my photos or posts without my written permission and I would assume the magazine and cookbook authors would feel the same way.
Now there are some blogs that do a great job of actually re-doing a recipe completely. They change the amount of ingredients and completely (emphasis on completely) change all the words in the instructions. Additionally and most importantly they provide a link back to the original source and state clearly that the recipe is adapted from such and such a source. Those blogs are doing the right thing, since it would now be considered their recipe.
Finally, what about the recipes on my site that you have to register to view on the magazine or cookbooks site? I want to state for the last time that this is the decision of the publisher or author of the site that the recipe comes from. There are more and more magazines moving to this type of access due to problems with plagiarism and copyright infringement. Someone completely copying a recipe onto their blog or webpage provides no revenue for the magazine that originally came up with the idea. They only make money if you are a subscriber or register for their site and are therefore exposed to advertising and other forms of revenue (such as data collection). The magazine is the one that decides that the recipe should be limited to those that are registered with the site and I completely agree with this decision since they are the ones that hold the copyright.
I hope this will clear up any confusion that anyone has about my blog. I blog because I love to share how recipes turn out in a real home kitchen. I don't get paid for my recipe review posts, I do it for the love of cooking and the joy of writing. If anyone isn't a fan of the style or content of my blog that is my fault alone. It is my hope to make new online friends and share my ideas and results. I hope that my loyal readers will continue to read and leave great comments and that I am able to find new bloggers and sites to enjoy and love.