I am going to write a book about myself. I will be working on this for awhile and it most likely will not be published physically. But I want to say the name of my middle school/high school. I want to know if I can do that. I actually went so I think it is but I would like a professional opinion first.

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    So long as it doesn't involve libel, and you don't mention names of actual people without getting their permission, I can see no reason why it wouldn't be acceptable. There's no problem with mentioning the names of actual places or landmarks, so the name of a school should be no different. But it's always best to consult an actual lawyer. Asking for the advice of random strangers on the internet isn't the best idea if you want to avoid being sued. Even if one of the random stranger is actually the right kind of lawyer, you wouldn't know that from a simple answer here. Apr 23, 2020 at 6:03
  • The only reason you might not name your school would be for fear of being sued for some form of libel. If you're entirely sure everything you want to publish is wholly true, why worry? What could "it most likely will not be published physically" mean, please? It will be published, or it will not… if you're hoping there are legal differences between what you could publish on paper or on line, forget it. On the level of this Question, there isn't a halfpenny-worth of difference. If you have the slightest doubt, use a fictitious name instead of the real one… Apr 25, 2020 at 22:02
  • writing memoirs and avoiding being sued... apparently memoirs are a special category. This website gives some explanations for the US
    – NofP
    Jan 17, 2022 at 10:11

2 Answers 2


The problem is not naming the school, the problem is what you SAY about the school, school employees, and other students without proof.

They could sue you. Even if you are oblique; "In 2012, the principal made me strip naked in his office, and groped me."

Well, you may not have named him, but who was principal in 2012 is a matter of record.

Making claims or accusations of law breaking or even just immorality that you cannot prove with anything but your own say-so is grounds for a lawsuit.

  • @HighPerformanceMark Ha! Thanks. Corrected. Twice!
    – Amadeus
    Jan 18, 2022 at 18:12

I would have thought that an autobiographical work didn't lend itself to this manner of editorialization, but I'd agree with Jason Bassford and run it past a lawyer to be sure. Chances are however, that you will need some manner of content for the lawyer to consider. If this is a work in progress, then you may be able to put these worries aside for awhile.

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