Update: DORIS Licensing Fees


What an impact many of you have made since we began our campaign last week. Our public comment has over 1,500 signatures, and we have heard from many of you who have submitted your own public comment. 

We wanted to provide a brief update on the situation, thank everyone who has pitched in, and let you know what you can still do to prevent this new proposal from becoming law. 

In case you missed the news... 

New York City's Department of Public Records and Information Services (DORIS) has announced they are considering a proposal to update the city's rules about how researchers can use public records obtained from the Municipal Archives, which includes birth, marriage, and death certificates from earlier than 1909.

The language in their proposal allows DORIS the ability to charge licensing fees for non-profit, educational, and media use of these records. That's in addition to the fee you pay to obtain a copy of the records. This could mean if you want to share the image on a website, in a presentation, or in any other way, you need to apply for a license and pay a fee.

Click here to catch up on all the details and learn what you can do to help prevent this from becoming law. 

Update video from NYG&B President D. Joshua Taylor

More from around the web

We are incredibly grateful for everyone who has supported this effort by writing blogs and alerting their own circles. Other members of the genealogical community have taken on this issue as well.

For example, you might want to read what the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies (IAJGS), Gail Dever of Genealogy à la carte, and Gary Mokotoff of Nu, What’s New have to say.

Judy Russell, The Legal Genealogist, wrote an excellent follow-up post on Thursday, October 8, where she shares her thoughts on the response by DORIS, her own thoughts that the genealogy community should not "turn down the heat." Don't skip this one! Click here to read.

Read More