RIP TNIV (c) Zondervan

September 2, 2009

The announcement that Biblica (aka International Bible Society) and Zondervan (aka Rupert Murdoch) are withdrawing the TNIV Bible from sale and will, in a couple of years, update the older NIV is just a small reminder:

You do not own your Bible.  You own the physical paper it is printed on, you own the ink.  You own the cover.  The text itself is owned by the translator and publisher, and you have a limited right to use that text for your own personal non-profit use.

So when the publisher decides to remove a translation from sale, then you better take very good care of the bits of paper and glue that you do own because when they finally give up the ghost you will not be able to replace them.

And if you are accessing that text through a website or a Kindle? Ah well.

A Free Bible?

June 24, 2009

Scott Wells from boyinthebands.com and I have been having a discussion about Freedom and the Bible.  As Scott puts it:

A few months ago, “Demas” from “Live from Thessalonica”
blog and I began a correspondence on freedom
and the Bible. Not “Bible” in an an abstract or theologized
sense, but as a text which is printed, spoken, translated
and edited. Nor “freedom” from a theologized sense,
but directly related to the use of the text and how the text
may be shared or restricted, and what that says about
Christian community.

A few months ago, “Demas” from “Live from Thessalonica” blog and I began a correspondence on freedom and the Bible. Not “Bible” in an an abstract or theologized sense, but as a text which is printed, spoken, translated and edited. Nor “freedom” from a theologized sense, but directly related to the use of the text and how the text may be shared or restricted, and what that says about Christian community.

The Bible may be a shared resource of our religion, but (with the partial exception of the World English Bible) the available translations are either written in a language the age of which puts a barrier between a modern reader and the text, or are copyrighted and subject to the control and power of the copyright owner.

The first part is written up in the latest edition of The Liberal Christian – available now!  Check it out.