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Heavenly thoughts, earthly riches

Associated Press reports that some Italian publishers have run into a royalty dispute with the Vatican over reprinted quotations and writings by Pope Benedikt XVI (formerly Joseph Ratzinger).

Writes AP staffer Frances D’Emilio: “After Ratzinger was elected pope April 19, the Holy See’s No. 2 official, Cardinal Angelo Sodano, signed a decree assigning “in perpetuity and worldwide” the copyrights of all Benedict’s works — including the hundreds he wrote before becoming pope — to the Vatican’s publishing house, Libreria Editrice Vaticana, known as LEV.”

LEV is asking for royalties on all separately published writings by the pope, including encyclicals and other teachings. (The story notes that Benedikt has a history of donating to charity his personal profits from his writing.)

Counters another religious publisher: “Let’s say a government makes a law. It’s in the interest of the government to have the law published. And it’s in its interest to have citizens read it, in an inexpensive edition.”

(Thanks to Bookninja.com for the link.)

Related links:
Click here for the AP story