GenMassachusetts-L ArchivesArchiver > GenMassachusetts > 2001-03 > 0984848384
From: "Steven Wallace" <>
Subject: [GM-L] Genealogy Web Sites - What Price?
Date: Sat, 17 Mar 2001 11:59:44 -0500
There has been much discussion about the ethics of selling access to genealogy data. While I see nothing new about this issue, people are suddenly raising the point in reaction to a particular (new?) web site. As long as these genealogy data services (web site operators) make no fraudulent representations, in the legal sense, people should be free to charge whatever they please. Just because the data might be available less expensively -- or even free of charge -- elsewhere, doesn't mean that their services are fraudulent, per se. This may be a stretch, but one could reasonably argue that merely having access to an organized set of databases is of some value in itself -- especially to people like my aunt, who might not like using search engines. If, in fact, some operator has made material misrepresentations on which people have relied, to their detriment, then they are already protected under the current law, and the AG's office can take a complaint if there really is so!
me type of fraud involved.
In any case, we can be grateful for the unfettered "free market" on the Internet but, as always, liberty comes with a warning label: caveat emptor, yet that seems a small price to pay for all the other benefits. As long as we can keep our fellow onliners informed with e-mail, I see no reason to make this a legal matter but, admittedly, there may be more to the story. If so, I will be glad to hear the details. Steven
|[GM-L] Genealogy Web Sites - What Price? by "Steven Wallace" <>|