12 November 1953
General Administration of Publications, No. (53)CJZ270
Our Administration has repeatedly received letters from administrative publishing organs, publishers and bookstores in Henan, Hubei, Jiangxi, Jiangsu, Shandong, Guangxi and other localities, reporting that all in various localities, reporting that in all localities, organs and organizations wilfully reprint books published by publishers, infringing the copyright of publishers and writers, impeding the effective handling of publishing work and distribution planning, giving rise to confusion on editions. For example, the Henan Provincial Department of Agriculture and Forestry Agricultural Commission reprinted 200.000 copies of the book “Materials on Mutual Aid and Cooperation in Agricultural Production”, published by the North China People’s Publishing House, but the North China People’s Publishing House has already published a revised edition of the book in question, the Henan Provincial Department of Agriculture and Forestry Agricultural Commission has reprinted the old version. As another example, the CCCP Guangxi Provincial Committee Rural Work Department reprinted the book “Agricultural Production Collectives” published by the North China People’s Publishing House, and the Xinhua Bookstore Guangxi Branch has stocked these. According to statistics, the most books are reproduced in Jiangxi. In the city of Nanchang, from the second half of 1952 until February 1953, non-publishing work units have reprinted 186 titles of books and pictures (not including internal reading materials), printing more than e million volumes and 80.000 pictures. Some reprints are completely unnecessary in fact. For example, the Nanchang Municipal Youth Committee reprinted 5.000 copies of the picture book “Eliminating Bacteriological Warfare”, Nanchang University reprinted “The Wedding of Little Erhei”, the Wuxi Municipal Textile Industry Association compiled and printed 17 “Handbooks on Factory Accounting”, with the content completely reprinted from elsewhere. We believe that this sort of phenomenon is harmful in many ways, it not only upsets publishing and distribution planning, and creates great waste, it also causes confusion on editions. This may easily engender political errors, and shall be corrected. Hereby, with the agreement of the Central People’s Government State Administration Council Culture and Education Commission, the following provisions are made:
I, No organs or organizations may themselves print unauthorized books or pictures published by publishers, in order to respect copyright and avoid waste, and facilitate the planned management and improvement of publishing and distribution.
II, All localities’ publishing houses and Xinhua bookstores shall actively and closely link up with all localities’’ organs and organizations, pay regard to timely publish and supply books needed by all organs and organizations for study. If any localities’ organs and organizations need large amounts of some books for use in internal study, they shall link up with the local Xinhua bookstore, the Xinhua bookstore is responsible for uniform adjustment, and satisfying the requirements of all organs and organizations as soon as possible.
III, If the demand of any locality’s organs and organizations of a certain book is too large, and the Xinhua bookstore has no stock or cannot timely provide supply, it is permitted to reprint them after consultation with and agreement of the original publishing work unit. If the original publishing work unit agrees with reprinting, it shall pay attention to timely provide appropriate versions, if the original book needs revision or reprinting ins inappropriate because of problems, the reasons shall be stated, and a response shall be speedily made. The original publishing work unit has the power to obtain reasonable copyright remuneration from the reprinter.
IV, Where, for all the propaganda needs of organs and organizations, books must be compiled by themselves and this sort of books must be openly distributed to society, after agreement from a certain leading organ, it is permitted to have then published uniformly by a local State-run publishing house.
V, All localities’ organs and organizations generally may not reprint publications of privately-run publishing houses, reprints must be made because of special reasons, this shall be conducted through the local administrative press and publishing organ at the same time as soliciting the agreement of the original publishing work unit.
Please notify the above provisions to relevant organs and organizations, and their subordinate publishing and distribution work units.
To: all large regional and provincial (municipal) administrative press and publications organs, the Central-level publishing houses, the Xinhua Bookstore General Store, the North China General Branch, the China Company Head Office.