Who owns the rights to writing.

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17
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3answers
3k views

Using the real world in writing

To what extent can you use locations, businesses, etc. from the real world in fiction? I know someone cannot copyright a city, but what about a particular location in the city that's private. Can I ...
15
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3answers
192 views

Can a copyright be made in the name of a fictional writer?

Is it possible to copyright a work in the name of a fictional writer? For example, like Nicolas Bourbaki or some pen name of some author? Can I use my own fictional name to copyright the work?
15
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1answer
1k views

Are Names of Characters Copyrighted by Authors?

Are names of characters copyrighted by authors? For example, the character "Eragon" from the Inheritance Cycle series, or a name that you've generated using an online name generator that you'd like to ...
10
votes
1answer
232 views

What are those “countdown” numbers on the copyright page?

On the copyright pages in many books I find the following "countdown" numbers and I am wondering what the significance of this is? In a non-fiction book I have, "The Call of the Mild" it looks like: ...
10
votes
2answers
94 views

Problems with posting work on the web for feedback

Participating in writing-related sites (like this one, and critique sites) sometimes involves describing a plot problem or sharing an excerpt from my work. So I'm usually vague because of the fear ...
9
votes
5answers
552 views

What's “fair use” for borrowing someone else's invented term?

Let's say I'm writing a sci-fi novel. I want to use a word which another writer has coined, which has become well-recognized outside the original book, for the name of an alien species in my story. I ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

Are music lyrics copyrighted?

I tried to find copyright information about music lyrics, but it is too confusing, because it is related to the usage. There are lots of websites providing lyrics, but it seems they are somehow ...
8
votes
2answers
515 views

Who is responsible for copyrighted materials (publisher or writer)?

Imagine that Writer A's book includes copyrighted material created by Creator B, and Creator B sues for copyright infringement. Will Writer A be held liable, or will the book publisher? I think the ...
7
votes
6answers
266 views

Is it safe to create a wiki for a book (or something featured in it) before the book is published?

I'm working on a sci-fi novel, and it contains a lot of fictional creatures, which are in some ways separate from the novel because I came up with them a while before I actually got the idea to write ...
7
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4answers
2k views

Legality of Academic Ghostwriting

I recently learned of the concept of academic ghostwriting (see, e.g. this article) - by which I mean the situation where a student goes to another person, or perhaps a service, and pays them to ...
7
votes
4answers
123 views

Is it legal to share an index you made from someone else's book?

There are some books published without a back-of-book index, which I feel is a dreadful shame. As part of my research I decided to create an index of one such book. Doing so is legal for my own use, ...
7
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3answers
165 views

Copyright - Can I go to any other publisher?

I have a question. I have self-published a book through Partridge publishing. This is what my contract says - "1.4. You will retain all rights to the content of the Work. We do not own rights to your ...
7
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2answers
248 views

Which free licence to choose for my book (manual)?

I wrote a 50 page manual that I plan to release for free. I do not mind if the book is copied, translated, printed, shared, ... I just want two things: I am the only person who can sell a copy of ...
6
votes
3answers
4k views

Can a book be published by more than one publisher?

1) Some books are published by more than one publisher. For example, if you go to Amazon or Flipkart and search for 'The Interpretation of Dreams' by Sigmund Freud, you will see many of them from ...
6
votes
3answers
92 views

May I use real weapon names in my book without copyright problems?

I would like to use some weapon names to sound familiar to readers, (AK47, M16, C4, Colt...), but as far as I have heard, using real names from weapons one must have the permission of the companies ...
6
votes
2answers
199 views

Publishing a translation

I hope I found the right stackexchange site for this question. I'm in the process of translating a book (scientific publication) for private use. If I ever decide to publish it, what is the procedure ...
6
votes
2answers
499 views

How do co-authors' rights to a manuscript work?

When an individual writes a novel, he owns all rights over the manuscript until he starts selling those rights to others. What is the situation when the novel is a collaborative work? How are such ...
6
votes
3answers
163 views

Front-matter or back-matter?

I'm re-releasing a novella of mine as a self-published ebook shortly, and I'm wondering what to do with the traditional "front matter" of the book: copyright information, dedications, ...
5
votes
3answers
689 views

On copyright laws and plots

I was pondering a lot on the issue with copyrights on plots. Is having an identical plot infringing someone else's copyrighted work? I am fully aware that the character names are copyrighted and ...
5
votes
3answers
121 views

Audio version of copyrighted written material

I want to do a free daily podcast of the Bible. Would I need permission of the copyright holder of the translation I am reading or would this be considered fair use? Would I need to state the source ...
5
votes
2answers
4k views

How does copyright apply to illustrations and cover art?

Is a paid-up-front illustrator entitled to royalties? If I hire an illustrator for artwork, and I pay up front on a per-illustration basis, what copyright gotchas should I be aware of? Does the ...
5
votes
3answers
380 views

Why would an author not agree to license his book to a foreign language?

Recently one rather famous author wrote a new book in English. Since I'm a fan of his writing and know that he's quite well recognized I thought that it would be great to translate it and publish in ...
5
votes
1answer
114 views

Can a title be copyrighted?

Is there any such thing as copyrighting a title? A title of a novel / short story is usually short, up to five words or so. The words are chosen after much thought to reflect the contents of work. ...
5
votes
2answers
110 views

Referencing, but not using, trademarked characters

Obviously, you're not allowed to use trademarked characters like Superman or Batman in your published works. If I wrote a novel about Superman fighting Lex Luthor, I could get sued. But what about ...
5
votes
2answers
63 views

How to tell if a fiction workshopping site protects my rights?

There are lots of websites for getting feedback for my writing. But since posting something publicly on the internet can count as "publication," I'm worried that posting my work there might prove an ...
4
votes
3answers
387 views

How can I get a copyright for my e-book?

As I'm a new writer, I don't know how to get copyright for my first book. Could anyone help me please? My book is an e-book in E-Pub format.
4
votes
3answers
396 views

Why doesn't everyone publish public domain books?

Are there any restrictions in publishing of material with expired copyrights? For example, Oliver Twist is a famous story by Charles Dickens, and people still buy the book. I would think that the ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Is it legal to use an old painting on the cover of a book?

Can I put an old painting on the cover of my book without violating the law? AFAIK the copyright for a painting expires after 70 years. Hence, if a painting was creatd in 1874 and 70 years expired in ...
4
votes
2answers
146 views

Dealing with potential copyright issues: manga

I have been spinning yarn around Kuchiyose Edo Tensei, a reincarnation technique I came across in the popular anime/manga series Naruto. Further developing on that, the concept of bloodlines (or ...
4
votes
1answer
392 views

Is Sherlock Holmes public domain for use in a story?

I am writing a short story and would like to name check Sherlock Holmes as a character; according to the ever reliable (?) Wikipedia the stories of Holmes are UK Public Domain. Does this mean I can ...
4
votes
4answers
649 views

Proper attribution of copyrighted lyrics in a story

If I put several lines of a copyrighted song in my text, and mention the band name, how can I be certain that my attribution is sufficient and guarantees against legal action? From what I've been ...
4
votes
1answer
827 views

How can I get permission to translate and republish a book?

I am interested in translating an English book into my native language. How can I get permission to translate the book? Would that also include permission to republish the book in the native ...
4
votes
3answers
302 views

Can a mock-magazine with fictitious content count legally as fan fiction?

I contribute to a motoring website, well, one that's got Photoshop of cars, motoring history etc. - it's a small obscure site with only a few users. Recently I've been learning InDesign and Quark ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

How to publish public domain books?

It is known that the copyright permission is not needed for old books (usually 70 years after the author's death), because the copyright has been expired. However, I am not sure how easy a public ...
3
votes
3answers
198 views

Can you reprint screen shots of a game application or program without permission?

It seems pretty normal to see screenshots of MS Word, steps for "this is how you generate a template". I don't think Microsoft would object. But I'm not sure about reprinting images from in-game ...
3
votes
2answers
248 views

What is first electronic rights?

I am unsure if I adequately understand the concept of first electronic rights. If I post a story on a writers' website for free but also publish it through Amazon, will it affect me?
3
votes
1answer
140 views

Is Patent text copyrighted?

When using text from articles published in journals and magazine, we need to obtain copyright permission from the copyright owner (publisher or author). I wonder if we need copyright permission when ...
3
votes
1answer
22 views

What is the Normal Process for Gathering Permissions for Quotation Collections

I am contemplating gathering a collection of quotations from a single writer, similar to The Quotable [C.S.] Lewis by Wayne Martindale [Tyndale]. Most of the writers works remain under copyright, ...
3
votes
2answers
65 views

How to get permission for using software screenshots in book?

I am writing a book which includes a review of old software and I would like to add a couple of screenshots for some of them. How do I go about this legally or, alternatively, does this qualify as ...
3
votes
1answer
131 views

permission to use emails from famous deceased person

I finished a creative non-fiction memoir about my secret life as a miracle worker. I am using three emails to me from a now deceased wildly popular tech icon. Our phone conversation as well as the ...
3
votes
1answer
64 views

Is anybody aware of a good way I can determine whether or not something is public domain, or royalty free?

I'm writing a textbook and I'd like to include an old paper from Alan Turing as an appendix. Searches on Google turn up copies of the paper, but I cannot seem to find anything explicitly indicating if ...
3
votes
2answers
81 views

How does copyright apply to the Q&A sections of educational or textbooks?

I'd like to document my learning experience, and I'd like to use the 'quizzes' or 'chapter review' style questions in my textbooks as the basis for blog posts. So basically, I finish a chapter and do ...
2
votes
2answers
70 views

Blog Contributions Copyright

I have a blog that discusses grammar in local languages. I publicized my email and asked for contributions from the readers and experts on the subject. How about copyright issues? If they contributed ...
2
votes
2answers
97 views

Do different formats of the same book need to be registered separately?

We're self-publishing a book in both paperback and e-book format. The content between the versions will be identical except for some formatting corrections (mainly white-space) made for the digital ...
2
votes
1answer
78 views

How to use creative commons materials?

Creative commons materials are popular on the web, and people are using these materials for creating new websites, as there is no severe copyright restriction. How does creative commons copyright ...
2
votes
2answers
129 views

Does DRM affect copyright or the restrictions on distribution by the author?

I hear how it is easier for the user to select DRM (digital rights management) free options so that they can use more software packages to read the book, but does that affect in anyway the authors ...
2
votes
1answer
147 views

Translation of my book “Babymoves” into Japanese

I have written and self published the book 'babymoves' in 2002. It is now in its third edition. I sell it through my website. I have been approached by a Japanese woman, wanting to translate the book ...
2
votes
1answer
202 views

Copyright of screens/movie posters

I am writing a (commercial) book about cinema and reviews of movies. My question is about pictures to illustrate the text. For example i suppose that i can't use the promotional poster of the movie ...
2
votes
2answers
121 views

Rights over a fanfic character not in the original work?

I realize fan fiction and rights is a stupid question because you are picking up from where a creator has already traveled. But what about a fictional character I create while writing fan fiction? ...
1
vote
4answers
400 views

Intellectual Property Rights & Reuse of the Written Material

I started freelance writing in the January of 2012 and I am providing services for SEO, Blog Articles, User Manuals, Travel Sites and Technical Documentation. Since then I have this question in mind. ...