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Tradition articles are downloadable from the Tradition Online website, which prohibits further distribution of the materials. On each download page there is the following warning:

It is strictly forbidden for both subscribers and article purchasers to share article downloads with others.

On what basis does the magazine (or the RCA, which publishes the magazine) retain such a right to prohibit any type of sharing? Surely even Copyright Law allows the purchaser of a published work to share it with others.

To clarify, my question is whether that statement is:

  1. reflective of law and therefore Halachah;
  2. effective of Halachah (like a sale 'Al Tenai, or a Neder, perhaps?); or
  3. meaningless.
share|improve this question
One (secular, not necessarily halachic) issue could be the difference between giving or lending (your physical magazine) and distributing (copying) a digital item. In the latter case you increase the number of copies in circulation and don't lose access yourself. Whether any of that matters in a specifically-Jewish context I don't know, but perhaps an answer will address this if so. – Monica Cellio Jul 25 '12 at 15:34
@MonicaCellio, if one is not allowed to make photocopies to teach a class (eg.) because of copyright law, what function does the warning serve? It does not effect the law (such that without the warning the law is inapplicable), AFAIK. Does it do so in Halachah? – Seth J Jul 25 '12 at 15:36
I thought that the issue is the infringement on the market place. If I share my download with you, you receive the benefit of the content without having to pay for that content. My pool of potential consumers is reduced and yet the consumers get the benefit of my work. One could reword or summarize but not share the actual, copyrighted content. – Danno Jul 25 '12 at 15:39
Closely related: judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/9473/… – Isaac Moses Jul 25 '12 at 15:48

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