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I’m considering writing a piece of business fiction to discuss some agile and testing principles. Given the wide number of books in this area it seems most appropriate to have characters discover the answers to their troubles through their reading.

I’d much rather do this than suggest the answers popped into their heads with blasts of brilliance. After all, characters have to work for their successes and it seems a much better way of doing it than adding a reading list at the end.

Are their any ramifications of characters reading real books, following real blogs, and using real websites? Could I get into copyright trouble?

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Are their any ramifications of characters reading real books, following real blogs, and using real websites? Could I get into copyright trouble?

I am not a lawyer, and this is a question for lawyers; but read this (from a lawyer): Trademark Law and Book Titles.

Basically, book titles cannot be copyrighted; but they might be, in whole or part, trademarked.

So if you refer to some title of a book or blog, and talk about an idea actually in it, as long as you are not denigrating or lying about that, and as long as you aren't including directly quoted passages from it, you are unlikely to be infringing. You have even given them credit by mentioning the source.

But you need lawyers to decide that.

If you intend to publish this through a full-service publisher, their lawyers and editors will review your work to ensure you are not doing something actionable. I would encourage you to get a lawyer to review it before you self-publish.

And definitely get a review if you intend in any way to insult an author's work, or insult an author's intelligence or veracity or motives. That kind of writing can be the basis of lawsuits.

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Again ask lawyer, but you could identify the books with a pun-y misspellings or book tittle that summarizes the book in such a obvious way.

In the book 'I am Charlotte Simmons' she goes to a University that looked exactly like mine, was located in the exact the small town my University was located in, but was named instead for one of the largest employers of that University/donor ecetra.

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