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A Finds Liaison Officer has called us thieves: “As someone who I know is keen to mitigate the ‘theft’ of the historic environment, it would be a shame to show any sort of hypocrisy when it comes to theft of another’s digital content after all.” It’s nonsense. We’re perfectly entitled to have published a small part of an image that was already in the public domain. But what really upsets us is that we’ve been fighting massive information theft by detectorists since before most FLOs left school yet we’re falsely accused of theft whereas detectorists constantly publish PAS images with never a squeak of protest!

PAS might be better employed acting on this: Christopher Beasley: “our club has a contract with farmer only single find worth over 2 grand are to be shared with farmer. So theres no point in hideing your find on our group“. Let them find that club (we think we know which it is). Let them tell them the “arrangement” is greedy, exploitative and unfair. Let them tell all likeminded clubs the same and that henceforth they require letters from farmers confirming they’ve been shown all finds and there are no rip-off arrangements in place.

For the avoidance of all doubt: we are a non-profit making voluntary conservation body being threatened with a £200 publication charge yet we’ve stolen nothing and earned nothing while PAS’s “partners” have stolen massive amounts of heritage knowledge and earned tens of millions of pounds – as PAS knows very well! An apology from PAS Head Office would be nice.

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A Wildlife Liaison Officer. Behaviour that’s a world away from his Finds equivalent.

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