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Old 11-30-10   #1
inkdreamer
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Question When copying from a book

Can I post a one page excerpt without getting the author's permission? Or only be sure to give the credit to him/her? Or do I have to rewrite what I read? I would like to share things I have read but I want to do it correctly. What are the rules?
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Old 11-30-10   #2
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Default Re: When copying from a book

Be sure to quote the author, the work you are pulling it from with page numbers and the like, and I'm sure you will be fine. That is, unless you are trying to make a profit ...?
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Old 11-30-10   #3
inkdreamer
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Default Re: When copying from a book

No, I only wish to share a bit with my friends. Thanks.
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Old 12-01-10   #4
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Default Re: When copying from a book

Just in case anyone checks this thread for purposes of actual publication - including online and even if you're not getting paid - the relevant term is 'fair dealing for the purpose of criticism' (or 'review').

Since this varies by country, good starting points are

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fair_dealing

and

http://www.copyrightservice.co.uk/co...t/p09_fair_use

(the latter isn't in fact as UK specific as the link implies)

I seem to recall that in the UK there is a limit on the amount that can be reproduced for publication, both as absolute and as a percentage.




EDIT: I sort of recalled correctly, but note that this isn't part of the law, simply guidance issued by the Society of Authors way back. Since I still can't find the original (it should be at:

http://www.societyofauthors.org

but they're reorganised their web site, the 'guides' page from the site map returns a 404 and a search reveals nothing ), but the guidelines are re-posted many time on the web, I picked Leeds uni. (link below, emphasis in text mine and italic comments mine) because they also have the most concise summary of photocopying.

The Society of Authors advises that permission need not be sought for short extracts provided that the content is quoted in the context of 'criticism or review' and not just to embellish the text:


A short prose extract is defined as:
  • not more than 400 words
  • or a total of 800 words in a series of extracts, none exceeding 300 words
(although it doesn't say it in this list, the implication is 'dispersed through your text', which is added by solent.ac.uk, their site being less than four years old. I'm damn sure the requirements are different for short texts but I can't find a copy anywhere, so I'll stick with 700 or 10%, not exceeding 300 in any one extract, dispersed.)



A poetry extract is defined as:
  • not more than 40 lines from a poem, providing that this does not exceed a quarter of the poem.
When deciding if the extract you wish to use is covered by fair dealing, consider:
  • the length and importance of the extract
  • the amount quoted in relation to your commentary
  • the extent to which your work competes with the work quoted
http://library.leeds.ac.uk/info/2001...d_moral_rights

Several publishers have more stringent limitations. Note again that this is in regard to 'publication'. Sharing on a closed list, or handing out two or three photocopies of extracts, as implied by the OP, is a grey area but you're usually OK with more in that case. Quoting somewhere like here is definitely 'publication'. Note that these guidelines do not cover quoting in fiction, where theoretically you should get permission every time. My own experience is that authors, agents and publishers all give permission for short, credited extracts in that case, though.

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Last edited by ffetcher; 12-01-10 at 06:30 AM. Reason: added some detail of the SoA guidelines
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Old 12-01-10   #5
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Default Re: When copying from a book

It depends what it is you're copying, and what you're copying it for. You're unlikely to get into trouble if you're circulating a photocopied page amongst friends, but if it's something you're wanting to post on the internet then you might get into trouble. A few paragraphs would be fine, but larger excerpts - even a page or so - would probably infringe copyright.

I've recently found that somebody's been cutting and pasting a large portion of articles from my own website and posting them on her blog as her own work (copyrighted to herself, even). If you're intending to post things on the internet then you might want to familiarise yourself with the DMCA. Having to deal with DMCA takedown notices can be complicated. Trust me on this.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital..._Copyright_Act
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Old 12-01-10   #6
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Default Re: When copying from a book

Quote:
Originally Posted by Annie View Post
Having to deal with DMCA takedown notices can be complicated. Trust me on this.
it sure can. In my case, for the guys I issue them to

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Last edited by ffetcher; 12-01-10 at 06:33 AM.
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Old 12-02-10   #7
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Default Re: When copying from a book

oops fogot to sticky this
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Old 01-13-11   #8
inkdreamer
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Default Re: When copying from a book

Thanks to all for your help. I think I will just go with paraphrasing and letting people know where I found my information.
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Old 01-13-11   #9
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Default Re: When copying from a book

Quote:
Originally Posted by Annie View Post
It depends what it is you're copying, and what you're copying it for. You're unlikely to get into trouble if you're circulating a photocopied page amongst friends, but if it's something you're wanting to post on the internet then you might get into trouble. A few paragraphs would be fine, but larger excerpts - even a page or so - would probably infringe copyright.
you can't copy more than a 1000 words.

Quote:
I've recently found that somebody's been cutting and pasting a large portion of articles from my own website and posting them on her blog as her own work (copyrighted to herself, even).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital..._Copyright_Act
i remember someone pulled something similar to that with Raven Grimassi.from what i heard it was a mess.
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Old 01-16-11   #10
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Default Re: When copying from a book

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lightdragon View Post
you can't copy more than a 1000 words.
ffetcher gives some good links about the topic: be sure to do your research before you decide to quote someone else's work.

Be sure to check the laws where you live. In some places the number of words you are permitted to copy without permission is a lot fewer than 1000.

If you go to the website for a university or college near where you live, and then search their website for "fair use policy" you should be able to get something that can help you understand what the laws are like in your area.
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