Flight Paths Grounded
I might be more interested in Flight Paths, the new online novel project of Kate Pullinger and Chris Joseph, if the license terms did not insist that
Hotlinking to any materials on the Site, including but not limited to, images and videos....is not permitted without the Writers prior written consent.
This passage has three blunders.
- I have no idea exactly what "hotlinking" is. (Meyrowitz used something like it in a 1989 keynote for transclusion, but I'm not sure that's the intended meaning here.) I think I may safely claim some expertise in this area — more expertise in the literature, I think, than any US or British judge currently possesses. So the passage is probably nonsense.
- It is unlikely that the Writers have authority to permit or prohibit linking to the site by anyone, for any legal purpose. It is still more unlikely that they have authority to permit linking to brief excerpts for the purpose of criticism, instruction, or education. Nothing here or elsewhere in the License reveal the theory under which the Writers claim this privilege.
- There's an apostrophe missing from "Writers'". Professors of English, novelists, and lawyers should each punctuate with care.
The story seems to involve a grocery shopper whose car is struck by the body of a stowaway who had flown from Karachi to Heathrow in a jetliner's wheel well.
Flight Paths seeks to explore what happens when lives collide — an airplane stowaway and the fictional, suburban London housewife, quoted above. This project will tell their stories.
The writing of this crucial introductory passage strikes me as loose. Is the housewife fictional or fictitious? Is the stowaway not fictitious. As we are exploring what happens "when lives collide", are we telling two stories or one? And, most pertinently, why are we talking about this dramatic collision when so many casual encounters raise the same questions? Look at In America; a family leaves Ireland with almost nothing, enters the US through the Canadian border, and here they are. Look at the sanctuary movement in US and British churches. Look anywhere on the Continent during WW2, or anywhere in Iraq today. Trouble need not fall from the sky; it can ring your doorbell.
None of this is a fatal defect, and it all can be corrected.