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Honor System for Use of Oasis Design Innovations and Content

Without attribution, the links necessary to maintain quality, currency, and completeness aren't there, and the quality of information suffers. Also, refinements to the design can't easily propagate or be vetted.

With robust attribution, even third-generation copies link back to the source. Updates are at most a click away, and refinements have a clear pathway back to the info hub, increasing the quality of information at every point in the system, especially over the long haul. Everybody wins.

We LOVE to see our designs and content publicized.
And…we have spent decades and hundreds of thousands of dollars on innovations and policy activism for the common good. We have chosen to publish our patentable original designs into the public domain. This means that no one can patent them and they will always be available royalty-free to the public.
We fund this research and make our living from providing accurate information on these and other designs in books and DVDs

(We also sell hard-to-find parts).
We're fine with people sharing or even making a business based on our designs. If you share our designs or content, please give us a robust credit and link back to us, as described below.
Here are our goals and policy for fair use of our designs and content:

Fair use goals

"Robust" attribution policy

Since we don't sell systems or get royalties, our only income is from people who want the information in our paid content (or hard-to-find parts). Instead of giving us the bare minimum attribution, please give us a "robust" attribution that makes it clear what we've contributed and how we can be supported:

1) Attribute
Please attribute the content/designs that originated with us:

2) Credit our role
If it's a design we invented, or a book we wrote, please say so. Here's a list with our role in selected innovations in the area of greywater, for example:

3) Link back to the source
Please provide a link to the most relevant page on our site. For example, if it's an excerpt from one of our books or DVDs, please link to the detail page for that item. If we sell a hard-to-find part for the design, feel free to link to that as well. A few words inviting people to support us by purchasing from us is a nice touch (one direct sale supports us as much as four sales through Amazon).

4) Request to keep the attribution with the content/design
If your own page is a widely copied information node itself, please encourage people who make copies of the copy to adhere to the points above.

5) Please don't copy so much of our material that people feel there's no need to visit our website or buy our paid content. The optimum is to excerpt enough information for the reader to tell whether they are interested in the system, and refer them to our info hub for complete, current information. As copyright law puts it: Don't replace the need for the original work (our designs are not patented, but all our content is copyrighted).
Brief citations also help maintain currency: We are committed to maintain current, authoritative information for the designs we develop. This means a lot of material. This also means frequent revisions; Create an Oasis with Greywater, for example, is in its twentieth revision. If there are hundreds of separate full copies, apart from the copyright issue, it's impossible for them all to stay updated.

6) Please Email us with a link to the page where you've cited our material, or a draft of it to review if it's going into print.


Drawing adapted from Create an Oasis with Greywater.


Hats off to Oasis Design for developing the Laundry to Landscape greywater system and publishing it unpatented. Please link to their Laundry to Landscape info hub if you share information on this design. You can support Oasis's work by purchasing a valve, book, or instructional DVD from them.


Portions of this material from Oasis Greywater Information Central.


The design details shown here are from Water Storage by Art Ludwig.


For full information and updates on the Branched Drain greywater system, see Create an Oasis with Greywater.


A tip of the hat to Oasis Design for decades of authoritative greywater information, policy work, and innovation, including the Branched Drain and Laundry to Landscape greywater systems. (Central Coast Greywater Alliance, Daily Acts)


The information on this page is used with the kind permission of Art Ludwig. Art is an ecological systems designer who has done extensive work with greywater systems. For more information, please visit his website where you'll find more than 300 pages of information about greywater, including greywater mistakes and preferred practices as well as the leading books on greywater. (from Let's Go Green)

Use of Images

Please include the following with Oasis images used on your site--


Please include the flowing in image metadata:

Copyrighted: Yes

Copyright Notice: Honor System for Use of Oasis Design Innovations and Content:

Copyright info URL:


A link directly from the image to the source page is a nice touch and an unobtrusive way to link to us (click on sample image below, for example)


Please include "OasisDesign" at the end of the file name, e.g.,




Here's an example, ready for use:

Image from the Laundry to Landscape info hub

Legal background

The primary consideration here is doing what's best. That being said, what's best was also a consideration in the development of laws, and what they have to say can be informative.
Note: All Oasis Design content is copyrighted. Our name and logo are trademarked. We have legal protection for these.
As noted above, we have chosen to publish our patentable original designs into the public domain, and rely on the honor system for people make fair use of them, as described above.

 "Fair Use"


Added emphasis is ours.
1. Purpose and character of the use
The first factor is regarding whether the use in question helps fulfill the intention of copyright law to stimulate creativity for the enrichment of the general public, or whether it aims to only "supersede the objects" of the original for reasons of personal profit. To justify the use as fair, one must demonstrate how it either advances knowledge or the progress of the arts through the addition of something new. A key consideration is the extent to which the use is interpreted as transformative, as opposed to merely derivative
3. Amount and substantiality
The third factor assesses the quantity or percentage of the original copyrighted work that has been imported into the new work. In general, the less that is used in relation to the whole, ex: a few sentences of a text for a book review, the more likely that the sample will be considered fair use…
4. Effect upon work's value
The fourth factor measures the effect that the allegedly infringing use has had on the copyright owner's ability to exploit his or her original work. The court not only investigates whether the defendant's specific use of the work has significantly harmed the copyright owner's market, but also whether such uses in general, if widespread, would harm the potential market of the original.

"Paraphrasing of copyrighted material"


Paraphrasing of copyrighted material may reduce the probability that a court will find that copyright has been infringed; however, there have been many cases where a paraphrase that uses quite different words and sentence structure has been found to infringe on a prior work's copyright… Laws on the degree of copying or paraphrasing that is considered permissible have become steadily more restrictive over the years.

"Moral rights"


Moral rights are rights of creators of copyrighted works that are generally recognized in civil law jurisdictions and, to a lesser extent, in some common law jurisdictions. They include the right of attribution and the right to the integrity of the work, which bars the work from alteration, distortion, or mutilation without the author's permission. Anything else that may detract from the artist's relationship with the work even after it leaves the artist's possession or ownership may bring these moral rights into play. Moral rights are distinct from any economic rights tied to copyrights. Even if an artist has assigned his or her copyright rights to a work to a third party, he or she still maintains the moral rights to the work.