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Feb 6, 2024 - 10:58:25 AM
421 posts since 3/28/2006

I traded Bob Flesher some rims for a copy of his backstrapping book entitled 25 Steps to Building a Backstrap. As far as I know I have the only copy because it was a work in progress when he sent it to me (typos included).
Obviously at the time, he did not want me to distribute it. Now that he has passed away, I wonder if such a great thing can be shared.
I suppose the owner of this work is Bob Flesher's estate.
Would it be ethical of me to post a digital version for free?
It's too good to be lost and forgotten.


Edited by - mhickler on 02/06/2024 11:02:24

Feb 6, 2024 - 12:20:28 PM

Alex Z

USA

5769 posts since 12/7/2006

Need to contact the estate.  That intellectual property -- an unpublished book of which you have a draft version -- has value, and should not be given away for free just because the information is useful to somebody.  That's the whole idea of intellectual property -- that the information is useful.

This is not a historic artifact in the public domain.  It is a person's work, which has value to its beneficiaries.

Besides, it may already be protected by copyright law.  Will leave that to others to opine on.

Edited by - Alex Z on 02/06/2024 12:23:10

Feb 6, 2024 - 12:20:50 PM

8247 posts since 9/21/2007

Legally it would be stealing-- and you are still stealing even if you are not profiting.

If you stole gold coins from someone and then gave them to the homeless you still stole the coins.

You could try and track down who gets his estate and ask for permission.

Feb 6, 2024 - 12:22:36 PM
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Alex Z

USA

5769 posts since 12/7/2006

Maybe an ethical course of action would be to volunteer to the estate to clean up the draft so they can publish it and offer it for sale.

Feb 6, 2024 - 12:46:59 PM
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682 posts since 2/21/2005

Pardon my ignorance, but what is a backstrap?

Feb 6, 2024 - 12:47:38 PM

793 posts since 5/29/2015

Amazon makes self-publishing rather simple or so I am told by a friend who has published a couple of books. Perhaps the estate would permit this and split the huge profits. A small but enthusiastic market probably exists for the book.

Feb 6, 2024 - 2:22:03 PM
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5707 posts since 5/29/2011

quote:
Originally posted by Bronx banjo

Pardon my ignorance, but what is a backstrap?


When an overlay on the back of the peghead extends down the neck. Here is a not so great example.


 

Edited by - Culloden on 02/06/2024 14:22:47

Feb 6, 2024 - 3:01:20 PM

421 posts since 3/28/2006

OK. Working with Bob's heirs sounds like the best plan. If anyone has any leads to contact his family, I'd appreciate it. Google has not turned up any helpful info.

Feb 7, 2024 - 12:42:10 AM
Players Union Member

Helix

USA

17506 posts since 8/30/2006
Online Now

You show your good heart, Mark if not quite enough information. Continue to research.  Fred Starner's Vega Longneck sits languishing in the closet, no family member is interested in furthering the music.

A good backstrap has more than one layer.

Keep going, Mark, the right info will emerge. 

Asking for permission isn't quite enough, Other details need to be nailed down .


 

Edited by - Helix on 02/07/2024 00:54:13

Feb 7, 2024 - 2:43:36 AM
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martyjoe

Ireland

515 posts since 3/24/2020

I’d guess that you are well capable of writing up a fresh book on the topic. Be sure to reference Bob Fletcher in the appropriate places.

Feb 7, 2024 - 6:36:04 AM

804 posts since 7/10/2012

I don't think I've ever seen a monograph dedicated to backstrapping, which I struggled to find guidance for the first time I made one and kind of feel like I have to figure out all over again every time I do it. Keep us posted on where you land with the family, Mark. I'd be interested in supporting the distribution of what promises to be a satisfying and useful piece of guidance.

Feb 7, 2024 - 9:44:07 AM
Players Union Member

Helix

USA

17506 posts since 8/30/2006
Online Now

I subscribe to the solid peghead
and heel
The back straps I’ve seen are all solid peghead

i agree the information is from a fine banjo builder whose time ran out

Edited by - Helix on 02/07/2024 09:45:02

Feb 12, 2024 - 9:08:31 AM

421 posts since 3/28/2006

The inheritor of Bob Flesher's estate does not want me to share the book. I offered to help them publish it, but they were not interested in pursuing publication. I am returning my one copy to the estate.

Feb 12, 2024 - 12:52:37 PM
Players Union Member

RioStat

USA

6281 posts since 10/12/2009

quote:
Originally posted by mhickler

The inheritor of Bob Flesher's estate does not want me to share the book. I offered to help them publish it, but they were not interested in pursuing publication. I am returning my one copy to the estate.


Why would you return it to the estate ?

You said you "traded some rims" to Mr Flesher for the book, so you rightfully own it.

Edited by - RioStat on 02/12/2024 12:54:10

Feb 12, 2024 - 1:03:22 PM
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421 posts since 3/28/2006

Yeah. Of course, but I can scan the book. Plus I have all the important stuff memorized. The estate could not locate all the pages on Bob’s computer, so my copy is literally the only way for them to have access to the complete work.

Feb 13, 2024 - 7:11:59 AM
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Alex Z

USA

5769 posts since 12/7/2006

quote:
Originally posted by mhickler

Yeah. Of course, but I can scan the book. Plus I have all the important stuff memorized. The estate could not locate all the pages on Bob’s computer, so my copy is literally the only way for them to have access to the complete work.


That's an ethical and generous thing to do.  It was beneficial that you contacted the estate.

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