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Questions tagged [copyright]

Questions involving matters of copyright, encapsulating parody and level of similarity questions, reprinting and publishing of copyrighted works, public domain, attribution, fanfiction, legality, and fair use questions. Any question involving copyright law in the U.S. or abroad should be given this tag.

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Is it legal to print out a book in a different language?

Theoretically, let's say I have a friend who speaks in a foreign language and cannot understand English very well. That friend wants to read a popular English book, but they can't read it because they ...
RealWorldScope's user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
107 views

Am I allowed to write a continuation of a book series/story I like? (Ex. Harry potter, Amulet, Wishtree etc.)

So I am a writer and I personally like to take ideas from other stories and make them my own. Of course I won't copy something obvious like "Once upon a time there was a boy name Parker Peter who ...
user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
986 views

Do I need to provide a date of birth when I register a work for copyright in the USA?

It appears that the standard US Copyright application for a literary work makes giving one's birth date optional. Is that correct?
Richard's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
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Can I use a photo or a video from a press release without permission?

In your news article or book, is it ok to include a photo or a video from a press release without permission – by of course crediting the firm that has issued that press release?
upstream's user avatar
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3 votes
3 answers
126 views

Selling small scenes?

I absolutely love writing small scenes. Smaller than a complete chapter. Is there any website where I can sell them? I am all for selling copyright over to whoever wants to write a story off of them, ...
FreyaAlexWriting's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
81 views

Can I legally rewrite another book if I change the setting and other aspects of the story?

Is it possible to rewrite a book into a more modern story to be a screenplay? That is, if there is an old book about a person who embarks on a life journey, and it's set in Africa, for example, and ...
Kicki Bengtsdotter's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
104 views

Is poetry written along the known song legal from the view point of copyright?

I wrote some (humorous) poetry that uses a known song as a pattern. The poetry could be sung instead of the original words of the song but I do not have any musical background to perform such a ...
h22's user avatar
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3 votes
1 answer
513 views

How can we avoid legal action from the family of a deceased dictator who we're caricaturing?

As we are writing a comic book, we find ourselves blocked by legal issues: The script contains fictional and real political elements including disputes and dialogues between dictator Nicolae Ceaușescu ...
Kandinski's user avatar
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1 answer
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What does the line of numbers at the very bottom of the copyright page mean?

I wish to finally publish my manuscript and fill in the copyright page, but I notice, in other publications, at the very bottom of the copyright page, is a row of numbers. Or actually, two sets of ...
ray grant's user avatar
  • 223
2 votes
0 answers
47 views

What do these 3 numbers mean on the copyright page?

Text: published in the USA by Hyperion Books for Children 2005 Published in Great Britain by Puffin Books 2005 This edition published 2013 020 What do the 3 numbers mean?
NeoSigma's user avatar
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1 answer
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Can I use a song lyric as the title of my theatre production?

I'm starting a theatre company and one of the ideas I have thought of for a production is an ongoing series of monologue/scratch evenings. I want to have the premise of each night to latch onto the ...
Izaak's user avatar
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4 votes
1 answer
104 views

How do I protect my future rights when approaching a publisher with a completed short story?

I have 11 non-fiction stories I am about to shop to magazine publishers. How do I protect my second and third . . . etc. publishing rights in my negotiations with first time publishers? How do I ...
The Wordsmith's user avatar
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0 answers
104 views

Am I plagiarizing?

I seem to see some similar questions to this, but not ones that answer my question well enough that I feel confident, so I’d love some feedback on my specific situation. I am a few chapters in to ...
user61596's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
114 views

Am I legally allowed to expand someone else's short story into a novel?

For years I told a short story in my kindergarten classroom. It was written and freely shared by the writer. I rewrote the short story (2-3 pages) into a middle grade chapter book, expanding the plot, ...
HRWriter's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
124 views

I have a character that has a slightly similar name to a title of a book. Do I have to change it even though it’s spelled completely different?

I have a character name that is similar to a book title. However the name is a fantasy type name but I spell it completely different. Will I get in trouble for my character having a similar name?
Fable's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
133 views

Legality of screenshots from TV commercials

Screenshots from TV commercials. I'm writing a book on costume design for students and I want to show an image from A TV commercial showing an example of advertising costuming style. Is it legal to ...
Vin's user avatar
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1 vote
3 answers
548 views

Can I name characters after characters in another work of fiction, or is that going to lead to copyright issues?

I have a novel in mind to write and I want to name the main two characters after two minor characters in Star Trek. They are not at all alike or connected in any way, but Star Trek is very important ...
Lindsey Webster's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
196 views

Posting Poetry by Deceased Persons

Do I have a legal right to post poetry on FB from my deceased grandmother's journal, written by others now deceased, in the 1920's, which includes their names and addresses? The journal was given to ...
Wendi Ward's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
93 views

It is legal to recreate Camp Half-Blood in my own writing? [duplicate]

"Camp Half-Blood" is the name of a location in a book series of the same name from the author Rick Riordan. It is legal to recreate this location in my own writing, even if the original ...
user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
76 views

A Novel Based Off A Song...How Close Can It Get?

I have recently become obsessed with the song Devil Town by Cavetown. I haven't been that into writing recently and this song has really inspired me. I was wondering what's a yes and whats a no to ...
Riley's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
111 views

Seeking advice on safeguarding my manuscript

I'm an Australian writer who is contemplating sending my manuscript to a novel editor in America. I'm concerned about the possibility of my work being claimed by someone else. Given my limited ...
Nuada Airgetlám's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
75 views

Can I publish a collection of poetry that alludes to other authors such as Shakespeare and Wordsworth without violating copyright?

I am a teacher. My students want to self publish their work as a collection of poetry and short stories. Some of their assignments were to allude to other works and authors—like Wordsworth or ...
Sgriggs's user avatar
6 votes
3 answers
1k views

Can I use more specific monsters and creatures legally?

To be specific, metallic or chromatic dragons for an example. I know mindflayers and beholders and such are way off the list. But is the concept of dragons in distinct categories like this too similar ...
Bruce Karn's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
92 views

Rights Clearance for Self-Publishers

Asking a lawyer to vet a book would be very expensive. Someone told me a better option is to hire a firm that specializes in reviewing books for intellectual problems, publicity rights, defamation, ...
Paredon's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
79 views

Can emphasizing a point qualify as fair use?

I'm learning the ropes regarding fair use. An important key word appears to be "transformative." If I'm writing political commentary, and I violently disagree with someone else's opinion, I ...
Paredon's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
346 views

How can I know if my character name is already taken? If it is, can I use the same name?

I am creating an action/adventure comic strip in the vein of Indiana Jones. Currently the character’s name is Panda Jack. The strip will have a title like “Panda Jack and the… fill-in-the-blank”. I am ...
R. McFaddin's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
150 views

Recreating public domain children's stories and using the original illustration?

Personally, I love old children's books. The artwork is phenomenal. Recently I saw more than one person selling Goldilocks and the 3 Bears. I do not intend to take public domain stories from one ...
abluepelican's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
92 views

Copyright question?

Can I use the phrases "what do you see?" and "I see--" that is used in Brown Bear, Brown Bear in a children’s book, or are those phrases copyrighted? My book is about Halloween ...
Shelly Baker's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
424 views

Is it copyright infringement if my character is pretty similar to another character?

I want to create a manga. The problem is that my characters are pretty similar to oshi no ko characters. For example, the main character has the star eyes like ai eyes, and her eyes are purple. ...
a person's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
193 views

Do I need to ask real locations' permission to use them in my story?

I have written a children's book about dragons and the things they do in Texas. Do I need to ask i.e. the Lubbock Arboretum if it's okay that I mention them in my story? So my question is: When do I ...
Clare's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
28 views

Can I say the word LEGO in my book [duplicate]

Can I say the lego set was destroyed on perpouse by someone?
user60212's user avatar
4 votes
4 answers
521 views

Is it a copyright violation to quote another book in my book?

I am writing a novel from the perspective of a character who is very obsessed with Chuck Palahniuk’s “Fight Club.” This is essential to the character and can’t be changed, but I can (and will, ...
mmink's user avatar
  • 49
0 votes
1 answer
170 views

Would this be a copyright issue?

I had an idea for a book like "Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?" but based on a popular children’s movie. If the artwork is my own, would there be any possible copyright issues?
Jessica's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
73 views

Applying copyright for book with photos

When we register a book for copyright, do we need to apply for separate copyright registration for the photos in the book? And how about the front and back cover, can we add those to the pdf file of ...
upstream's user avatar
  • 131
2 votes
2 answers
315 views

Is my story too much like Harry Potter?

Is my story too much like Harry Potter? My story is set in a magical world hidden within our own, and it has many magical version of things we do. It has wands but I have decided to change it and ...
Gabriel Loynes's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
794 views

How is AI treated in terms of copyright?

If a writer uses an AI tool and enters a prompt then uses the tool's output, is that copyright infringed? Just to be more clear with my question. I am not talking about a prompt that says "Write ...
user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
202 views

Can I use a song and/or quotes when writing a play?

I would like to write a one act play based on a song. Would I be violating any copyright issues or anything for this approach? A music video was made for the song and one film used it for its opening ...
Lssd's user avatar
  • 13
-1 votes
1 answer
116 views

Is this plagiarism or against copyright?

The main character is an Isekai'd individual who gains a summon skill that lets her create templates of her summons. She makes a summon called Kuriboh that initially can multiply and explode. Some of ...
NeoDraconis's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
89 views

Publishing copyright with regard to novels and comics

I wasn't sure where to post this, but I have a couple of questions about copyright law regarding written and illustrated works. If I traditionally publish a novel and maintain the copyright, can I ...
Ren's user avatar
  • 1
4 votes
3 answers
631 views

Too much like Harry Potter - Tropes

I am designing a magical world for which I have plenty of ideas but I am worried if they are too much like Harry Potter. Please look through this list and tell me which ideas are too much like Harry ...
Gabriel Loynes's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
24 views

International post-publicaton copyright

I have an unusual question. My husband wrote a non-fiction niche book which is unlikely to ever have any monetary value and which was self-published in Canada. He is recently deceased. I am not sure ...
Cameo's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers
59 views

Correct authorship attribution for online resource published under usernames

I am currently writing my PhD thesis and found a very helpful illustration of the human brain which is distributed under a CC license. I made some minor changes to the image, but of course I still ...
PKlumpp's user avatar
  • 143
1 vote
2 answers
232 views

What if I have a story with some characters from another story by a different author and don't want to be copyrighted?

I am writing a story with some of Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson characters in it like, Percy, Annabeth, Grover,Leo, Hazel, Piper, Jason, and much more other characters in his story. I wanted to make a &...
Kancee Likes's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
1k views

How to copyright my deceased brother's book

When I apply to copyright my deceased brother's book, do I do it in my name?
gracie's user avatar
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-2 votes
1 answer
218 views

Can there be fan fiction of a public domain universe?

Fan fiction generally occupies a gray area of the law - widely tolerated under "fair use" for noncommercial sharing, publication, and performance, but almost never acceptable for profiting ...
Robert Columbia's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
83 views

should I insert a copyright notice into my Kindle Direct Publishing Vella publication?

Is it a good idea to have a copyright notice at the beginning or end of each episode, or in my Vella story's Description section? I'm thinking maybe: "COPYRIGHT 2022 BY ALL RIGHTS RESERVED"
Doug Null's user avatar
  • 201
0 votes
1 answer
61 views

Copywrite/patent issues

I am writing a children' book. The main character is an animal that has a name and characteristics that are very identifiable to a human actor's character. For instance, let's say the animal was a ...
Lisa Seifred's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
80 views

What can I do so my work isn't closely similar to others?

I'm writing romance right now. I'm on the part where it's like a really good poem or a scene. You know, the one where you'll see it posted/quoted everywhere in Instagram or some other, but everything ...
user56271's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
146 views

Are you allowed to use sci-fi terms you get from the internet?

I’m working on a sci-fi project for a major franchise and it focuses heavily on sci-fi tech terms and science concepts and terms. Lots of the terms I invented but some I found on Internet forums like ...
Max's user avatar
  • 11
1 vote
1 answer
113 views

Can fan fiction be licensed under a free license that permits commercial use?

Most fan fiction are not freely licensed, but can a fan fiction/story be licensed under a free license, e.g. a CC BY license (or other Creative Commons license that allows commercial use)? Does this ...
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