Using Your Home Gym Equipment for Best Results

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It pays to be honest about how good of shape you are in right now and if you have any physical limitations. If you’re very overweight then some advanced equipment such as an elliptical machine or stair stepper might be a little ambitious. A better piece of home gym equipment to start with might be a treadmill or recumbent bike. These machines are a bit less challenging and usually easier for those just starting out. Getting overwhelmed with home gym equipment that’s too difficult for you to use or that’s too advanced for your current level of fitness is just going to get you discouraged and keep you from using it altogether.

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If you’re ready to start losing weight and to get in better shape, you may be in the market for some home gym equipment. The idea of having your own equipment where you can use it at your own convenience and without having to worry about a long line or about people in the gym judging you for how out of shape you are can be very appealing, and many have found that the right gym equipment can really get them back into a good routine of physical fitness. But before you grab the credit cards and run down to the local sporting goods store, you should give some consideration to the following pointers in order to get the most out of your home gym.

For one thing, it pays to be honest about how good of shape you are in right now and if you have any physical limitations. If you’re very overweight then some advanced equipment such as an elliptical machine or stair stepper might be a little ambitious. A better piece of home gym equipment to start with might be a treadmill or recumbent bike. These machines are a bit less challenging and usually easier for those just starting out. Getting overwhelmed with home gym equipment that’s too difficult for you to use or that’s too advanced for your current level of fitness is just going to get you discouraged and keep you from using it altogether.

You should also ask yourself where you’re going to store your home gym equipment. If you’re thinking of adding pieces to the bedroom, how much room do you realistically have? If you keep it in the garage, will that make it inaccessible? Will it be too cold during some months or to hot during other months so that you decide not to use it? If you can, it’s always recommended that you clean out a specific area of the living space for your home gym equipment. If you don’t need to drag it out or fight your way around some things then it can be much easier to use and you’ll be more likely to stick with your routine.

If you are unsure if you will really stick with a home exercise routing perhaps purchasing some used exercise equipment would be a good first step. After you have developed a good routing that has lasted for several months then you may want to invest in some of the newer and better equipment. There are many good buys available from people that had great expectations, but they were unable to stick with it for one reason or another.

Be sure to add some resistance pieces to your set of home gym equipment. By lifting weights and adding muscle tone you will burn calories more efficiently and will lose weight faster as well. This doesn’t mean straining yourself or overdoing it. Just lifting a little bit of weight on a regular basis can yield great benefits, so even some hand weights can be part of your home gym equipment and can be easily stored in any closet or under the bed.

Of course your home gym equipment won’t do any good if you don’t use it. Make it part of your regular schedule and stick to it, and you’ll get results in no time.

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Posted on January 22nd 2020 in Uncategorized

Poufs for Your Living Room

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When you decorate your living room there are a few items that will come as standard and that everyone considers. Of course the main suit is one of these things, and you never really come across a living room that doesn’t have an armchair and at least one sofa. Of course then you have the television and so some furniture for the television to stand on.

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However there are many other items of furniture you can add to your living room that are a bit rarer and that can offer a different range of benefits. For example a decorative chest is a great way to add storage space to a room but also to improve the look of your living room.

A pouf is quite similar in this respect. It is an item of furniture not found in everyone’s living room, and at the same time it is one that has multiple uses. Leather Ottoman poufs are very attractive to look at so that way you have already added to the aesthetics of the room. At the same time though they are also highly practical.

Of course the main thing that many of us will use poufs for is as a foot rest. They are soft and comfortable (particularly leather Ottoman poufs) and are just the right height to be the right foot level while we are sitting down on another item of furniture. This really does increase the comfort of all your furniture as you can enjoy a far more reclined position and taking the pressure off of the soles of your feet which is a great feeling when you’ve spent the day walking around on them and they’re feeling sore. It’s worth pointing out to a partner too that in this position they are in the perfect angle for a foot massage. At the same time sitting in this position also has a range of health benefits and is good for you circulation too among other things.

The other big use for poufs is that they can make great extra seating in their own right. If you have guests around then you never know how busy your living room is going to get while you’re entertaining and few people have enough chairs around that they’re ready for every possible contingency. A pouf is something to sit on other than the floor that won’t take up much space and also won’t block your eye-line. It’s perfect for if family friends or relatives bring round their children, but poufs are also comfy enough to be fine for adults too (and they’re far less ‘slouchy’ than bean bags which would look out of place in a nicely designed living room décor).

In short then they look the part and particularly Moroccan poufs or leather ottoman poufs, they are highly practical and can be used as foot rests or seats, and they’re small enough that they don’t take u much space. This is a great addition to your living room then for anyone who wants something a bit different that will improve their décor and prove to be endlessly useful.

Shop for exquisite Moroccan poufs that come in different sizes, shapes & colors to fit any space. All our Moroccan leather ottoman poufs are made out of genuine leather and are hand sewn, hand embroidered. We offer handmade poufs with silk embroidery as well as contemporary style poufs and square poufs.

Posted on January 21st 2020 in Uncategorized

Australian politician Karen Overington dies aged 59

Australian politician Karen Overington dies aged 59
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Friday, August 12, 2011

File:Kareen overington.jpg

Former Australian Member of Parliament Karen Overington has died at the age of 59. Her death followed a long battle with ill health. Overington was the Member of Parliament for Ballarat West with the Labor Party from 1999 until she stood down in 2010. During her political career, Overington worked to improve living standards for the community’s disadvantage.

Tributes have flown in for Overington from both her political colleagues and opponents. Premier of Victoria Ted Baillieu said “On behalf of the Victorian Coalition government, I express sincere condolences to family, friends and parliamentary colleagues on both sides of the Parliament, Karen was always a passionate representative of the Labor Party, the people of Ballarat and the people of Victoria.”

Opposition leader Daniel Andrews also commented: “She stood up for her community, lobbying strongly to deliver better education, health and other services that have made a real difference to families in Ballarat West.” Sharon Knight, the woman who won the parliamentary seat in Ballarat West after Overington stood down, praised her, saying, “she epitomised a real local member.”

Overington is survived by her two children.

Posted on January 21st 2020 in Uncategorized

Find Your Inner Slimness With Lap Band Surgery

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Submitted by: Marcus Landauer

Obesity drags down the quality of life on so many levels. It causes serious health problems and plays havoc with your daily life affecting everything from getting around to choosing clothes. Weight loss surgery is one way to claim your inner slimness that promises remarkable results. Read all about it here.

Weight loss surgery promises remarkable results but it’s no quick fix. In fact it’s the procedure of last resort for those who are morbidly obese. This doesn’t mean the procedures are involved or risky, though. The most popular procedure is laparoscopic gastric band (lap band) surgery. It’s popular because it’s fast, easy and has few side effects. Here’s the lowdown on lap band weight loss surgery.

Lap band surgery is a type of restrictive weight loss surgery. As the name implies, it works by restricting the volume of food entering your digestive system. In this way, fewer calories reach the bloodstream.

It works by forming a pouch out of the top part of the stomach by putting an inflatable band around it and attaching the band to the stomach with staples. When eating, this pouch fills quickly and sends a signal to the brain to indicate it’s full. Thus you stop eating. The food then gradually passes through a small opening into the rest of the stomach and hence into the small intestine in the normal way.

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A few weeks after the operation and the sutures have healed, the doctor inflates the band using a reservoir attached to the band by a tube. This inflation causes the restriction. The reservoir is located just under the skin allowing the doctor easy access. Adjusting the band to its optimum size is critical and many adjustments may be needed over a period of several months.

Lap band surgery is popular for many reasons. Firstly, lap band procedures are done using keyhole (laparoscopic) surgery. This type of non-invasive operation leaves minimal scarring. The whole procedure takes around 30 minutes. Another plus is that in lap band surgery, the food passes through the whole digestive system, albeit in reduced quantities. This means that nutrients are absorbed normally.

So how can you decide if lap band surgery is for you? The main criteria are that you have been severely weight for over five years and have failed to lose weight using conventional methods. (You should have made a sustained effort for at least six months to lose weight by diet and exercise).

Another factor is whether your health is at serious risk resulting from your weight. This is a condition known as morbid obesity and can mean a body mass index (BMI) of over 40 or a BMI of over 35 with an attendant medical condition such as diabetes.

In addition, you should not be suffering from any psychological or physical condition that precludes the weight loss operation. Consult your doctor for detailed information.

If you feel these conditions apply to you, the next step is to consult with a doctor specialising in bariatrics (obesity cure). He will be able to advise you on whether lap band surgery is for you. If so he will advise you on the procedure and make arrangements for you.

Losing excess weight can be a life-transforming experience working wonders on physical, social and emotional levels. If you’re obese and want to makeover your health and life, call a lap band surgery specialist and inquire today.

About the Author:

is one of the UK’s leading specialist providers of cosmetic surgery and weight loss surgery procedures.


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Posted on January 21st 2020 in Weight Loss Surgery

Eurovision ’82 winner Nicole talks about ‘Ein bißchen Frieden’, her success and the Contest today

Eurovision ’82 winner Nicole talks about ‘Ein bißchen Frieden’, her success and the Contest today
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Monday, February 2, 2009

It has been nearly 27 years since Nicole, then a high school student from the Saarland in extreme western Germany, sang a heartfelt plea for world peace on the stage at the Eurovision Song Contest held in Harrogate, North Yorkshire in the United Kingdom. That simple message was wrapped with success; she became the first German in Contest history to take home the grand prize. The song was a brainchild of her former record producer, Ralph Siegel, and would be their greatest achievement in their nearly three-decade partnership.

Afterward, she was propelled to stardom across Europe by recording versions of her winning song, “Ein bißchen Frieden” (A little peace), in many European languages. To this day, it was the last winning Eurovision song to top the charts in the United Kingdom; it also has the distinction of being the 500th #1 single on the British charts.

This newfound fame brought her music to audiences across Europe, and in time, into Asia as well. By the end of the 1980s, however, her fame subsided somewhat and she refocused her career domestically. Since 1980, she has released over 30 albums in Germany; her most recent offering, Mitten ins Herz (Right into your heart), was accompanied by a three-month “unplugged” tour that ended in the third week of January.

Now off the road, Nicole spoke with Wikinews’ Mike Halterman about her past success, her life and career today, and her overall impressions of the Eurovision Song Contest, both past and present. This is the first in a series of interviews with past Eurovision contestants, which will be published sporadically in the lead-up to mid-May’s next contest in Moscow.

Posted on January 21st 2020 in Uncategorized

Major Transport Accessibility Options for Students in London

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London offers an ideal choice of stay for students that are contemporary accommodations strategically located close to university campuses and other important places of interest. Students are at a benefit as they save a lot on their daily commute.

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London, a city of dreams for students, offer contemporary style accommodations strategically located near the city’s top academic institutions. Students can choose from several room types available in the properties with additional onsite amenities to enjoy luxury living on a budget. Students also feel rest assured to travel and explore the city and also save on commute through viable transport availability to enjoy in the city of London.

Rahere Court
Rahere Court is the most popular student accommodation and a great choice among university students. Ideally located within close proximity to the Mile End campus of the Queen Mary University, it is just a few minutes’ walks away from this property. The student accommodation London is also less than 20-minutes away from Central London and walking distance from many London universities. It just takes a 15-minutes’ walking distance to reach the London Metropolitan Aldgate campus of City University and reach central London/Russell Square universities in less than 20-minutes on the tube or by bus.

Therese House
Those staying in Therese House can spot the nearest bus stop which is a stone’s throw away from the residence and the nearest subway station Barbican is a 3-minutes’ walk away. Students, therefore, cannot make any excuses when it comes to meeting friends anywhere in the city. Likewise, they can enjoy weekends with friends over a couple of drinks at The Bowler Pub and Kitchen or the Oriole Bar, both of which are within walking distance of the residence.

Mannequin House
Mannequin House student accommodation is a really advantageous option of stay for students, especially for those enrolled in the University of Westminster, London Metropolitan University, and City University London. They can travel in less than 40-minutes by tube ride to reach respective campuses on time. Not just to universities, the accommodation provides great transport links to the entire city and only a minute to spare. Students can reach the bus stop is less than 2-minutes and also board trains from the nearest train station on Blackhorse Road. The city center is also away by public transport.

North Lodge
London’s public transport system offers close connectivity with bus stops spotted at just 5-minutes’ walking distance and the Tottenham Hale Train Station at 9-minutes on foot. Students can reach central London in no time with the Tottenham Hale Subway Station just a 6-minutes’ walk away. The area is also close to parks, restaurants and cafes.

iQ Aldgate
iQ Aldgate student accommodation is situated in the heart of the city and is quite near for students of Coventry University, City University with other campuses located at a moderate distance. The public transport availability is just a short distance away, making it easy for students to find their way around town to explore it to the fullest. The closest bus station is just a minute away and the best places in the city are explored with guaranteed affordability.

iQ Hoxton
Well-connected via public transport, iQ Hoxton student accommodation has bus stops only a 5-minutes’ walk and the train station a 10-minutes’ walk away. Students can also throng at a lot of restaurants and cafés around and satisfy their hunger cravings within minutes.

The aforementioned properties in London, therefore, have the best living choice for students to stay in purpose-built student accommodation London (PBSAs) available across the city of London and also within close proximity to the public transport system.

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Posted on January 20th 2020 in Uncategorized

Turning down the heat to save energy and money

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It is possible to help your budget and the environment at the same time. In fact, one very simple way to do just this is to just turn the heat down. Unlike other energy saving measures which require a significant investment of time and money, anyone can use this strategy from the individual at home to a big business.

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At this point, you may well be sceptical!
Perhaps you are even wondering how low you may have to turn your thermostat in order to actually save energy and of course money. Well, the truty is that You will probably be pleasantly surprised to learn that you do not have to turn your heat down very much at all to see a savings in your energy bills.

According to studies done by The Carbon Trust, you could save up to 30% off your heating bills this winter by turning down your thermostat just 1 degree! In fact, if people and buisnesses across the country did just that, over 35 million pounds could be saved in energy and electricity bills. One degree of heat really amounts to a lot of money! Perhaps you might even try turning down the thermostat a whole 2 degrees in order to help save even more money and electricity and give some love back to the environment.

It won’t make life uncomfortable
Lowering your heat one or two degrees should not make that much of a difference, if any, in your overall comfort this winter. In fact, your home or business may not even feel any colder to you even though the thermostat is set lower. If you are slightly uncomfortable due to the change in temperature, you can compensate by wearing a sweater or even some thermal underwear! You may also want to try dressing in layers to keep yourself warmer.

It is also important to not overheat your home or office as this can drive up your costs as well. In fact, overheating can raise your energy bills by around 8%. Keep in mind that you should slowly heat up a cold room. Turning up the heating thermostat as far as it can go in order to quickly heat a room does nothing more than wastes energy. It may be necessary to have an office staff meeting or discuss these tips with your family to ensure that everyone at your office or home is working towards lowering energy bills. and consumer prices won’t get cheaper at this time of year, so it is worth being conscientious.

Knowing that you are helping the environment should warm your heart a little bit and keep you motivated. HoweverArticle Search, the real motivation for your family might be the fact that there will be extra money in the budget to spend!

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Posted on January 14th 2020 in Uncategorized

Advantages of Hiring a Property Management Company

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1. Better screening for occupants.

Numerous individuals who claim rental homes expect that they can deal with their property management themselves. This is at times obvious; be that as it may, we have the assets and the experience to screen inhabitants. This prompts higher quality inhabitants who remain on the property longer, pay lease all the more dependably, and make less harm.

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2. Less lawful stresses.

Do you know each government, state, and nearby law that applies to your home and your inhabitants? Most property holders don’t! Be that as it may, property management experts have made rental management our vocation. We must ensure each I is dabbed and each legitimate commentary pursued exactly. Not knowing the laws all around can leave you wide open for expensive claims and other lawful issues. Only one claim will cost more than many years of property management expenses.

3. Less opening.

An expert property director realizes how to get a home leased and keep it leased as far as might be feasible. From deciding a reasonable cost to charge to covering nearby distributions with advertisements, there are numerous ways that the stars can keep your home involved and those rental checks coming in. Potential inhabitants regularly search out enormous property management company in their general vicinity as opposed to looking in grouped advertisements or on Craigslist.

4. Separation among inhabitant and proprietor.

Overseeing inhabitants now and then means settling on hard choices—regardless of whether to acknowledge late lease without an expense, for instance. Untrustworthy individuals attempt to exploit property proprietors in an assortment of ways. Some will play on your normal compassion and worry for other people. A property management organization has the advantage of being seen and treated as an expert element. That implies fewer reasons and more lease paid on schedule.

5. Better—and less expensive!— support of your property.

It’s anything but difficult to disregard the subtleties of home upkeep when you don’t live in the home. A property director makes it their business to deal with the little touch-ups that counteract bigger issues over the long haul. Furthermore, property directors normally get critical limits from contractual workers and upkeep laborers on account of the volume of administrations that they use.

6. Insurance from tricks.

There are numerous rental tricks that exploit unpracticed property proprietors. Furthermore, a few people will profess to be a rental candidate possibly to sue for separation when rejected for authentic reasons. Property management organizations have a predictable application process that has been endorsed by attorneys, therefore getting rid of individuals who need to make an excel of an unpracticed proprietor.

7. No managing removals.

Removals can be a long and baffling procedure. An expert property supervisor realizes how to screen for individuals who are probably going to require an ousting. On the off chance that one ‘proficient inhabitant’ becomes lost despite a general sense of vigilance, experts likewise realize how to get them securely and legitimately expelled from the home as fast and effortlessly as could be allowed.

8. More tax benefits.

It very well may be hard to sort out the majority of a rental home’s costs when expense time moves around. Along these lines, numerous mortgage holders pass up certain conclusions. Moreover, property management expenses are deductible. Having an expert property supervisor implies more conclusions and a lower expense bill.

To put it plainly, we can make your life simpler and even set aside your cash over the long haul. There is no motivation to take on a confounded rental market aloneFind Article, call Total Property Management and rest guaranteed!

Posted on January 10th 2020 in Uncategorized

Beat your transport stress by hiring personal driven vehicles in Chicago

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Have you just arrived after a long haul flight? Considering hiring personal driven vehicles is perfect to beat your transport stress and aching limbs. Having a driver to pick you up right from the arrivals means it includes a sign in personalized hand showing you to the waiting vehicle.

You can use even your Smartphone to secure your service. This is of high convenience to all types of tourists.

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There are many vehicles available in Chicago that feature finest chauffeur driven vehicles ensuring your respect as an elite traveler. Tourists taking the personal driven vehicles offer first class service. The drivers are trained professionally to suit every need. This includes the drivers coming in immaculate dress to on-time precise scheduling. They are knowledgeable and also respected that your travel with them is safe and secure.

At a glance benefits:

The car service is available 24 hours a day
The vehicles come fitted with GPS navigation systems, so no time waste.
Cars come stocked with reading materials and cold water
Facilitate booking easily online

Parking details

In Chicago considering the parking details is inevitable. The best is to arrive early so that you get street parking and you can save $25 and more by parking in the official United Center parking that is in Downtown Chicago and a bit west of Fulton Market. Thus, carry this handy parking map of the free United Center and keep your wallet safe.

Another option of free parking is the standing zones for 15 minutes. For a quick errand, you may look in the standing zones for free street parking, but remember you can park only for 15 minutes, ensure to keep flashing the hazard lights.

These standing zones for 15-minute is common throughout the city and so keep looking for it in front of hotels, office buildings, grocery stores, and residential buildings.

If you need 1 or 2 hours of free validated parking, there is a way to find a free spot. you can find all over the city right from 44 E Ontario (Trader Joe’s) to 10 E Grand ( Eataly) to 131 N Clinton ( French Market). There are free parking places available for an hour or two on making an in-store purchase for $20.

The other location that provide free parking for an hour or 2 features a validated ticket and it includes Saint Joseph Hospital, Metra MarketArticle Submission, and Rock N Roll McDonalds.

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Posted on January 9th 2020 in Uncategorized

U.K. National Portrait Gallery threatens U.S. citizen with legal action over Wikimedia images

U.K. National Portrait Gallery threatens U.S. citizen with legal action over Wikimedia images
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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

This article mentions the Wikimedia Foundation, one of its projects, or people related to it. Wikinews is a project of the Wikimedia Foundation.

The English National Portrait Gallery (NPG) in London has threatened on Friday to sue a U.S. citizen, Derrick Coetzee. The legal letter followed claims that he had breached the Gallery’s copyright in several thousand photographs of works of art uploaded to the Wikimedia Commons, a free online media repository.

In a letter from their solicitors sent to Coetzee via electronic mail, the NPG asserted that it holds copyright in the photographs under U.K. law, and demanded that Coetzee provide various undertakings and remove all of the images from the site (referred to in the letter as “the Wikipedia website”).

Wikimedia Commons is a repository of free-to-use media, run by a community of volunteers from around the world, and is a sister project to Wikinews and the encyclopedia Wikipedia. Coetzee, who contributes to the Commons using the account “Dcoetzee”, had uploaded images that are free for public use under United States law, where he and the website are based. However copyright is claimed to exist in the country where the gallery is situated.

The complaint by the NPG is that under UK law, its copyright in the photographs of its portraits is being violated. While the gallery has complained to the Wikimedia Foundation for a number of years, this is the first direct threat of legal action made against an actual uploader of images. In addition to the allegation that Coetzee had violated the NPG’s copyright, they also allege that Coetzee had, by uploading thousands of images in bulk, infringed the NPG’s database right, breached a contract with the NPG; and circumvented a copyright protection mechanism on the NPG’s web site.

The copyright protection mechanism referred to is Zoomify, a product of Zoomify, Inc. of Santa Cruz, California. NPG’s solicitors stated in their letter that “Our client used the Zoomify technology to protect our client’s copyright in the high resolution images.”. Zoomify Inc. states in the Zoomify support documentation that its product is intended to make copying of images “more difficult” by breaking the image into smaller pieces and disabling the option within many web browsers to click and save images, but that they “provide Zoomify as a viewing solution and not an image security system”.

In particular, Zoomify’s website comments that while “many customers — famous museums for example” use Zoomify, in their experience a “general consensus” seems to exist that most museums are concerned with making the images in their galleries accessible to the public, rather than preventing the public from accessing them or making copies; they observe that a desire to prevent high resolution images being distributed would also imply prohibiting the sale of any posters or production of high quality printed material that could be scanned and placed online.

Other actions in the past have come directly from the NPG, rather than via solicitors. For example, several edits have been made directly to the English-language Wikipedia from the IP address, one of sixteen such IP addresses assigned to computers at the NPG by its ISP, Easynet.

In the period from August 2005 to July 2006 an individual within the NPG using that IP address acted to remove the use of several Wikimedia Commons pictures from articles in Wikipedia, including removing an image of the Chandos portrait, which the NPG has had in its possession since 1856, from Wikipedia’s biographical article on William Shakespeare.

Other actions included adding notices to the pages for images, and to the text of several articles using those images, such as the following edit to Wikipedia’s article on Catherine of Braganza and to its page for the Wikipedia Commons image of Branwell Brontë‘s portrait of his sisters:

“This image is copyright material and must not be reproduced in any way without permission of the copyright holder. Under current UK copyright law, there is copyright in skilfully executed photographs of ex-copyright works, such as this painting of Catherine de Braganza.
The original painting belongs to the National Portrait Gallery, London. For copies, and permission to reproduce the image, please contact the Gallery at or via our website at”

Other, later, edits, made on the day that NPG’s solicitors contacted Coetzee and drawn to the NPG’s attention by Wikinews, are currently the subject of an internal investigation within the NPG.

Coetzee published the contents of the letter on Saturday July 11, the letter itself being dated the previous day. It had been sent electronically to an email address associated with his Wikimedia Commons user account. The NPG’s solicitors had mailed the letter from an account in the name “Amisquitta”. This account was blocked shortly after by a user with access to the user blocking tool, citing a long standing Wikipedia policy that the making of legal threats and creation of a hostile environment is generally inconsistent with editing access and is an inappropriate means of resolving user disputes.

The policy, initially created on Commons’ sister website in June 2004, is also intended to protect all parties involved in a legal dispute, by ensuring that their legal communications go through proper channels, and not through a wiki that is open to editing by other members of the public. It was originally formulated primarily to address legal action for libel. In October 2004 it was noted that there was “no consensus” whether legal threats related to copyright infringement would be covered but by the end of 2006 the policy had reached a consensus that such threats (as opposed to polite complaints) were not compatible with editing access while a legal matter was unresolved. Commons’ own website states that “[accounts] used primarily to create a hostile environment for another user may be blocked”.

In a further response, Gregory Maxwell, a volunteer administrator on Wikimedia Commons, made a formal request to the editorial community that Coetzee’s access to administrator tools on Commons should be revoked due to the prevailing circumstances. Maxwell noted that Coetzee “[did] not have the technically ability to permanently delete images”, but stated that Coetzee’s potential legal situation created a conflict of interest.

Sixteen minutes after Maxwell’s request, Coetzee’s “administrator” privileges were removed by a user in response to the request. Coetzee retains “administrator” privileges on the English-language Wikipedia, since none of the images exist on Wikipedia’s own website and therefore no conflict of interest exists on that site.

Legally, the central issue upon which the case depends is that copyright laws vary between countries. Under United States case law, where both the website and Coetzee are located, a photograph of a non-copyrighted two-dimensional picture (such as a very old portrait) is not capable of being copyrighted, and it may be freely distributed and used by anyone. Under UK law that point has not yet been decided, and the Gallery’s solicitors state that such photographs could potentially be subject to copyright in that country.

One major legal point upon which a case would hinge, should the NPG proceed to court, is a question of originality. The U.K.’s Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 defines in ¶ 1(a) that copyright is a right that subsists in “original literary, dramatic, musical or artistic works” (emphasis added). The legal concept of originality here involves the simple origination of a work from an author, and does not include the notions of novelty or innovation that is often associated with the non-legal meaning of the word.

Whether an exact photographic reproduction of a work is an original work will be a point at issue. The NPG asserts that an exact photographic reproduction of a copyrighted work in another medium constitutes an original work, and this would be the basis for its action against Coetzee. This view has some support in U.K. case law. The decision of Walter v Lane held that exact transcriptions of speeches by journalists, in shorthand on reporter’s notepads, were original works, and thus copyrightable in themselves. The opinion by Hugh Laddie, Justice Laddie, in his book The Modern Law of Copyright, points out that photographs lie on a continuum, and that photographs can be simple copies, derivative works, or original works:

“[…] it is submitted that a person who makes a photograph merely by placing a drawing or painting on the glass of a photocopying machine and pressing the button gets no copyright at all; but he might get a copyright if he employed skill and labour in assembling the thing to be photocopied, as where he made a montage.”

Various aspects of this continuum have already been explored in the courts. Justice Neuberger, in the decision at v Rodney Fitch & Co. held that a photograph of a three-dimensional object would be copyrightable if some exercise of judgement of the photographer in matters of angle, lighting, film speed, and focus were involved. That exercise would create an original work. Justice Oliver similarly held, in Interlego v Tyco Industries, that “[i]t takes great skill, judgement and labour to produce a good copy by painting or to produce an enlarged photograph from a positive print, but no-one would reasonably contend that the copy, painting, or enlargement was an ‘original’ artistic work in which the copier is entitled to claim copyright. Skill, labour or judgement merely in the process of copying cannot confer originality.”.

In 2000 the Museums Copyright Group, a copyright lobbying group, commissioned a report and legal opinion on the implications of the Bridgeman case for the UK, which stated:

“Revenue raised from reproduction fees and licensing is vital to museums to support their primary educational and curatorial objectives. Museums also rely on copyright in photographs of works of art to protect their collections from inaccurate reproduction and captioning… as a matter of principle, a photograph of an artistic work can qualify for copyright protection in English law”. The report concluded by advocating that “museums must continue to lobby” to protect their interests, to prevent inferior quality images of their collections being distributed, and “not least to protect a vital source of income”.

Several people and organizations in the U.K. have been awaiting a test case that directly addresses the issue of copyrightability of exact photographic reproductions of works in other media. The commonly cited legal case Bridgeman Art Library v. Corel Corp. found that there is no originality where the aim and the result is a faithful and exact reproduction of the original work. The case was heard twice in New York, once applying UK law and once applying US law. It cited the prior UK case of Interlego v Tyco Industries (1988) in which Lord Oliver stated that “Skill, labour or judgement merely in the process of copying cannot confer originality.”

“What is important about a drawing is what is visually significant and the re-drawing of an existing drawing […] does not make it an original artistic work, however much labour and skill may have gone into the process of reproduction […]”

The Interlego judgement had itself drawn upon another UK case two years earlier, Coca-Cola Go’s Applications, in which the House of Lords drew attention to the “undesirability” of plaintiffs seeking to expand intellectual property law beyond the purpose of its creation in order to create an “undeserving monopoly”. It commented on this, that “To accord an independent artistic copyright to every such reproduction would be to enable the period of artistic copyright in what is, essentially, the same work to be extended indefinitely… ”

The Bridgeman case concluded that whether under UK or US law, such reproductions of copyright-expired material were not capable of being copyrighted.

The unsuccessful plaintiff, Bridgeman Art Library, stated in 2006 in written evidence to the House of Commons Committee on Culture, Media and Sport that it was “looking for a similar test case in the U.K. or Europe to fight which would strengthen our position”.

The National Portrait Gallery is a non-departmental public body based in London England and sponsored by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. Founded in 1856, it houses a collection of portraits of historically important and famous British people. The gallery contains more than 11,000 portraits and 7,000 light-sensitive works in its Primary Collection, 320,000 in the Reference Collection, over 200,000 pictures and negatives in the Photographs Collection and a library of around 35,000 books and manuscripts. (More on the National Portrait Gallery here)

The gallery’s solicitors are Farrer & Co LLP, of London. Farrer’s clients have notably included the British Royal Family, in a case related to extracts from letters sent by Diana, Princess of Wales which were published in a book by ex-butler Paul Burrell. (In that case, the claim was deemed unlikely to succeed, as the extracts were not likely to be in breach of copyright law.)

Farrer & Co have close ties with industry interest groups related to copyright law. Peter Wienand, Head of Intellectual Property at Farrer & Co., is a member of the Executive body of the Museums Copyright Group, which is chaired by Tom Morgan, Head of Rights and Reproductions at the National Portrait Gallery. The Museums Copyright Group acts as a lobbying organization for “the interests and activities of museums and galleries in the area of [intellectual property rights]”, which reacted strongly against the Bridgeman Art Library v. Corel Corp. case.

Wikimedia Commons is a repository of images, media, and other material free for use by anyone in the world. It is operated by a community of 21,000 active volunteers, with specialist rights such as deletion and blocking restricted to around 270 experienced users in the community (known as “administrators”) who are trusted by the community to use them to enact the wishes and policies of the community. Commons is hosted by the Wikimedia Foundation, a charitable body whose mission is to make available free knowledge and historic and other material which is legally distributable under US law. (More on Commons here)

The legal threat also sparked discussions of moral issues and issues of public policy in several Internet discussion fora, including Slashdot, over the weekend. One major public policy issue relates to how the public domain should be preserved.

Some of the public policy debate over the weekend has echoed earlier opinions presented by Kenneth Hamma, the executive director for Digital Policy at the J. Paul Getty Trust. Writing in D-Lib Magazine in November 2005, Hamma observed:

“Art museums and many other collecting institutions in this country hold a trove of public-domain works of art. These are works whose age precludes continued protection under copyright law. The works are the result of and evidence for human creativity over thousands of years, an activity museums celebrate by their very existence. For reasons that seem too frequently unexamined, many museums erect barriers that contribute to keeping quality images of public domain works out of the hands of the general public, of educators, and of the general milieu of creativity. In restricting access, art museums effectively take a stand against the creativity they otherwise celebrate. This conflict arises as a result of the widely accepted practice of asserting rights in the images that the museums make of the public domain works of art in their collections.”

He also stated:

“This resistance to free and unfettered access may well result from a seemingly well-grounded concern: many museums assume that an important part of their core business is the acquisition and management of rights in art works to maximum return on investment. That might be true in the case of the recording industry, but it should not be true for nonprofit institutions holding public domain art works; it is not even their secondary business. Indeed, restricting access seems all the more inappropriate when measured against a museum’s mission — a responsibility to provide public access. Their charitable, financial, and tax-exempt status demands such. The assertion of rights in public domain works of art — images that at their best closely replicate the values of the original work — differs in almost every way from the rights managed by the recording industry. Because museums and other similar collecting institutions are part of the private nonprofit sector, the obligation to treat assets as held in public trust should replace the for-profit goal. To do otherwise, undermines the very nature of what such institutions were created to do.”

Hamma observed in 2005 that “[w]hile examples of museums chasing down digital image miscreants are rare to non-existent, the expectation that museums might do so has had a stultifying effect on the development of digital image libraries for teaching and research.”

The NPG, which has been taking action with respect to these images since at least 2005, is a public body. It was established by Act of Parliament, the current Act being the Museums and Galleries Act 1992. In that Act, the NPG Board of Trustees is charged with maintaining “a collection of portraits of the most eminent persons in British history, of other works of art relevant to portraiture and of documents relating to those portraits and other works of art”. It also has the tasks of “secur[ing] that the portraits are exhibited to the public” and “generally promot[ing] the public’s enjoyment and understanding of portraiture of British persons and British history through portraiture both by means of the Board’s collection and by such other means as they consider appropriate”.

Several commentators have questioned how the NPG’s statutory goals align with its threat of legal action. Mike Masnick, founder of Techdirt, asked “The people who run the Gallery should be ashamed of themselves. They ought to go back and read their own mission statement[. …] How, exactly, does suing someone for getting those portraits more attention achieve that goal?” (external link Masnick’s). L. Sutherland of Bigmouthmedia asked “As the paintings of the NPG technically belong to the nation, does that mean that they should also belong to anyone that has access to a computer?”

Other public policy debates that have been sparked have included the applicability of U.K. courts, and U.K. law, to the actions of a U.S. citizen, residing in the U.S., uploading files to servers hosted in the U.S.. Two major schools of thought have emerged. Both see the issue as encroachment of one legal system upon another. But they differ as to which system is encroaching. One view is that the free culture movement is attempting to impose the values and laws of the U.S. legal system, including its case law such as Bridgeman Art Library v. Corel Corp., upon the rest of the world. Another view is that a U.K. institution is attempting to control, through legal action, the actions of a U.S. citizen on U.S. soil.

David Gerard, former Press Officer for Wikimedia UK, the U.K. chapter of the Wikimedia Foundation, which has been involved with the “Wikipedia Loves Art” contest to create free content photographs of exhibits at the Victoria and Albert Museum, stated on Slashdot that “The NPG actually acknowledges in their letter that the poster’s actions were entirely legal in America, and that they’re making a threat just because they think they can. The Wikimedia community and the WMF are absolutely on the side of these public domain images remaining in the public domain. The NPG will be getting radioactive publicity from this. Imagine the NPG being known to American tourists as somewhere that sues Americans just because it thinks it can.”

Benjamin Crowell, a physics teacher at Fullerton College in California, stated that he had received a letter from the Copyright Officer at the NPG in 2004, with respect to the picture of the portrait of Isaac Newton used in his physics textbooks, that he publishes in the U.S. under a free content copyright licence, to which he had replied with a pointer to Bridgeman Art Library v. Corel Corp..

The Wikimedia Foundation takes a similar stance. Erik Möller, the Deputy Director of the US-based Wikimedia Foundation wrote in 2008 that “we’ve consistently held that faithful reproductions of two-dimensional public domain works which are nothing more than reproductions should be considered public domain for licensing purposes”.

Contacted over the weekend, the NPG issued a statement to Wikinews:

“The National Portrait Gallery is very strongly committed to giving access to its Collection. In the past five years the Gallery has spent around £1 million digitising its Collection to make it widely available for study and enjoyment. We have so far made available on our website more than 60,000 digital images, which have attracted millions of users, and we believe this extensive programme is of great public benefit.
“The Gallery supports Wikipedia in its aim of making knowledge widely available and we would be happy for the site to use our low-resolution images, sufficient for most forms of public access, subject to safeguards. However, in March 2009 over 3000 high-resolution files were appropriated from the National Portrait Gallery website and published on Wikipedia without permission.
“The Gallery is very concerned that potential loss of licensing income from the high-resolution files threatens its ability to reinvest in its digitisation programme and so make further images available. It is one of the Gallery’s primary purposes to make as much of the Collection available as possible for the public to view.
“Digitisation involves huge costs including research, cataloguing, conservation and highly-skilled photography. Images then need to be made available on the Gallery website as part of a structured and authoritative database. To date, Wikipedia has not responded to our requests to discuss the issue and so the National Portrait Gallery has been obliged to issue a lawyer’s letter. The Gallery remains willing to enter into a dialogue with Wikipedia.

In fact, Matthew Bailey, the Gallery’s (then) Assistant Picture Library Manager, had already once been in a similar dialogue. Ryan Kaldari, an amateur photographer from Nashville, Tennessee, who also volunteers at the Wikimedia Commons, states that he was in correspondence with Bailey in October 2006. In that correspondence, according to Kaldari, he and Bailey failed to conclude any arrangement.

Jay Walsh, the Head of Communications for the Wikimedia Foundation, which hosts the Commons, called the gallery’s actions “unfortunate” in the Foundation’s statement, issued on Tuesday July 14:

“The mission of the Wikimedia Foundation is to empower and engage people around the world to collect and develop educational content under a free license or in the public domain, and to disseminate it effectively and globally. To that end, we have very productive working relationships with a number of galleries, archives, museums and libraries around the world, who join with us to make their educational materials available to the public.
“The Wikimedia Foundation does not control user behavior, nor have we reviewed every action taken by that user. Nonetheless, it is our general understanding that the user in question has behaved in accordance with our mission, with the general goal of making public domain materials available via our Wikimedia Commons project, and in accordance with applicable law.”

The Foundation added in its statement that as far as it was aware, the NPG had not attempted “constructive dialogue”, and that the volunteer community was presently discussing the matter independently.

In part, the lack of past agreement may have been because of a misunderstanding by the National Portrait Gallery of Commons and Wikipedia’s free content mandate; and of the differences between Wikipedia, the Wikimedia Foundation, the Wikimedia Commons, and the individual volunteer workers who participate on the various projects supported by the Foundation.

Like Coetzee, Ryan Kaldari is a volunteer worker who does not represent Wikipedia or the Wikimedia Commons. (Such representation is impossible. Both Wikipedia and the Commons are endeavours supported by the Wikimedia Foundation, and not organizations in themselves.) Nor, again like Coetzee, does he represent the Wikimedia Foundation.

Kaldari states that he explained the free content mandate to Bailey. Bailey had, according to copies of his messages provided by Kaldari, offered content to Wikipedia (naming as an example the photograph of John Opie‘s 1797 portrait of Mary Wollstonecraft, whose copyright term has since expired) but on condition that it not be free content, but would be subject to restrictions on its distribution that would have made it impossible to use by any of the many organizations that make use of Wikipedia articles and the Commons repository, in the way that their site-wide “usable by anyone” licences ensures.

The proposed restrictions would have also made it impossible to host the images on Wikimedia Commons. The image of the National Portrait Gallery in this article, above, is one such free content image; it was provided and uploaded to the Wikimedia Commons under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation Licence, and is thus able to be used and republished not only on Wikipedia but also on Wikinews, on other Wikimedia Foundation projects, as well as by anyone in the world, subject to the terms of the GFDL, a license that guarantees attribution is provided to the creators of the image.

As Commons has grown, many other organizations have come to different arrangements with volunteers who work at the Wikimedia Commons and at Wikipedia. For example, in February 2009, fifteen international museums including the Brooklyn Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum established a month-long competition where users were invited to visit in small teams and take high quality photographs of their non-copyright paintings and other exhibits, for upload to Wikimedia Commons and similar websites (with restrictions as to equipment, required in order to conserve the exhibits), as part of the “Wikipedia Loves Art” contest.

Approached for comment by Wikinews, Jim Killock, the executive director of the Open Rights Group, said “It’s pretty clear that these images themselves should be in the public domain. There is a clear public interest in making sure paintings and other works are usable by anyone once their term of copyright expires. This is what US courts have recognised, whatever the situation in UK law.”

The Digital Britain report, issued by the U.K.’s Department for Culture, Media, and Sport in June 2009, stated that “Public cultural institutions like Tate, the Royal Opera House, the RSC, the Film Council and many other museums, libraries, archives and galleries around the country now reach a wider public online.” Culture minster Ben Bradshaw was also approached by Wikinews for comment on the public policy issues surrounding the on-line availability of works in the public domain held in galleries, re-raised by the NPG’s threat of legal action, but had not responded by publication time.

Posted on January 8th 2020 in Uncategorized