Questions tagged [fair-use]

An exception to the limitations that can be imposed by a copyright owner. A similar concept in the U.K. is called "fair dealing."

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7answers
8k views

Can “Dumb Starbucks” be legally considered Fair Use as satire or parody?

About a year ago, a new, familiar-looking coffee shop opened in LA. Their reasoning for this was, basically, that it's making fun of the popular coffeehouse chain and is thus fair use: Naturally, it ...
13
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1answer
1k views

In the US, when is fair use a defense to copyright infringement?

What is fair use in the US? When would it be a successful defense to copyright infringement?
12
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1answer
1k views

Is WINE illegal?

Is WINE (WINE Is Not an Emulator) illegal? Given that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has held in Oracle v. Google that APIs are copyrightable, is WINE (which reproduces the Windows ...
9
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1answer
129 views

Fair use of text snippets in a dictionary

If a dictionary (about the use of scientific terminology) includes snippets from several sources, would an authorization be needed from each copyright holder? Each entry in the dictionary would ...
8
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3answers
347 views

Is there a fair use exception for trademarks?

The copyright law has the famous fair-use exception, where you can legally use some parts of copyrighted works without having to pay any royalties to, or ask any permission from, the copyright holder. ...
7
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1answer
244 views

Is it legal include an image from Wikipedia into a lead-generating e-book?

I'm writing an e-book, which is supposed to generate leads in the following way: People visit my landing page. There, they see a text like "Enter your e-mail address and get this e-book for free". ...
7
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2answers
630 views

Can I sell my notes on a book without copyright infringment?

I read a machine learning book. I invested a lot of time to make extensive and clear notes. Some concepts required a lot of research to understand. I have explained some concepts in my own way. ...
6
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2answers
713 views

Do search engines need permission to start searching?

I was talking to my friends a few days ago about search engines and we started discussing whether or not they need permission from websites to crawl them. I looked this one up and it said on Quora ...
5
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1answer
2k views

Is using font on a business card considered commercial use?

I'm currently designing a business card for a client and looking for an applicable font. A lot of these fonts are marked with some sort of payment required for commercial use. While I don't plan to ...
5
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1answer
225 views

Can I release someone else's work under creative commons or some other license, if its fair use?

Okay, let's say a website has some content. You can take a small amount, what would usually constitute fair use, and incorporate into a larger work. You know put this under a creative commons license ...
4
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2answers
320 views

Could I infringe a copyright if I use content available for free online?

I made a video and uploaded it to YouTube. I created the video, but I attached an audio track I found online for free. How do I know if I am allowed to use this audio in this way? If I pay for ...
4
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4answers
221 views

Is it fair use to discuss a fictional work on a webpage?

On my for-profit website, users can rate and comment on works of literature, film, and music, most of which are copyrighted. The only information I include is: 1.) Title 2.) Release date 3.) MPAA ...
4
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2answers
822 views

May I write a novel based on another novel?

Like if I want to write a book series about Harry Potter character Rita Skeeter's life, may I do it? I always hear that this isn't allowed. But as far as I know some people have written a book about ...
4
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1answer
360 views

Is this copyright infringement? Is it fair use? What if I don't make any money off it?

If someone were hypothetically working on a project that required them to incorporate copies of a copyrighted work (music, movies, books, etc.), how would they know if it would be considered fair use? ...
4
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2answers
216 views

Can I use modified version of Apple, Android, Windows, and Blackberry logos in commercial advertising to show compatibility?

I am making and commercially reproducing a script that would show textual advertisements based on a user's device. I want to, beside the text, have an icon showing the device in order to show ...
4
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2answers
2k views

Can I use copyrighted media for strictly personal use?

I know copyright / author's rights definition. I read bunch of texts about them and I am also aware that, for example, there are a kind of tolerance on YouTube about uses of copyrighted media (ex: ...
4
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1answer
177 views

Who owns copyright of video gameplay captures?

There are many videos on Youtube and it doesn't seem they are being removed, so one might conclude that they do not infringe copyright of the game publisher. But it could also be that for copyright ...
4
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1answer
148 views

Is it legal to republish lyrics?

Can a lyrics web site be legal, assuming there are no special agreements with the artists? Is publishing song lyrics considered "fair use?"
4
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2answers
310 views

Are there legal consequences for giving away my own musical transcriptions of copyrighted works on a website?

I've transcribed a lot of video game music in my lifetime, and am interested in making these sheet music transcriptions freely available for download on a website. I see that a lot of other websites ...
4
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1answer
1k views

Is it legal to use Youtube thumbnails on another website?

Let's say I have a website where each page has an embedded Youtube video, and there are also a list of this web pages, can this list display those video thumbnails as the image of the link to the page ...
3
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2answers
56 views

copyright question (constructs and presentations)

I got a threatening email from someone today alleging copyright infringement on a website that I built as a personal project back in 2013 to crowdsource the latest trail data from the long-distance ...
3
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1answer
131 views

Is it legal to post GIFs/videos of NFL plays online?

On some blogs I see GIFs or videos of certain plays from NFL games. Is it legal to create these and post them online? You always hear the disclaimer on TV about using the footage, but I see this stuff ...
3
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3answers
226 views

Could a webpage about a fictional character, that reveals no detail about said character, be considered fair use?

It is my understanding that since fictional characters generally belong to copyrighted works, revealing details about a fictional character on a for-profit website falls outside of fair use and makes ...
3
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3answers
346 views

Is it illegal in the EU / in Germany to download a scientific e-book?

Suppose there's a scientific monograph I really want to read but don't want to buy. I find an e-book on some website (where it is accessible to the public without restrictions) and download it. I don'...
3
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1answer
83 views

In Oracle America v. Google, what was the District Court jury's rationale behind its “fair use” finding?

In the case of Oracle America v. Google, the District Court of Northern California ruled on whether or not Google's reimplementation of 37 Java APIs constituted fair use. My question is, how - in the ...
3
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1answer
77 views

What would constitute Fair Use in a work that is derivative of a parody?

Let's say that there's a work B, which under U.S. law seems to count clearly as a transformative use (parody, satire or the like) of another work A, and thus subject to fair use. So what about a work ...
3
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2answers
189 views

How does the exclusive right to public display apply, e.g., to t-shirts?

17 USC §106(5) says that the copyright holder of work holds the exclusive right to display the work publicly: (5) in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, ...
3
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1answer
98 views

Is it legal to modify the display of website content?

Several apps and sites like longform and readability offer users a "read view" of other sites, which includes stripping the content of ads and changing font to make the text easier to read. I am ...
3
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1answer
497 views

Is it legal to use movie frames or actor images as online avatars?

Browsing around social networks and this community, I see that there are users that use pictures of actors from TV series as their avatar. I don't want to point to anyone's profile to give an ...
3
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1answer
5k views

Is it legal to include Apple emoji in a commercial printed book?

Could I sell a printed work, say a book, which included Apple's emoji characters? Also if I redrew them in the same style only for purposes of providing a higher resolution version of the emoji would ...
3
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3answers
215 views

Is it legal for a company to require an extra software license for a backup?

I work for a company that has purchased a software license for software that is needed to make our company run smoothly. We'd like to create a backup of the server in case of hardware failure, however ...
3
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0answers
542 views

Trading Card Database - Copyright Infringement or Fair Use?

I would like to create a text-only database for collectible trading card games. The database would contain card names, ability text, flavor text, etc. Images would not be included. This project would ...
2
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1answer
432 views

Does musical satire really require permission from the copyright holder?

I was reading this article on American art-rock/new-wave band Devo in The New Yorker and came across this claim that puzzles me: It’s a little unclear why Warner, once they learned that Devo wanted ...
2
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1answer
168 views

YouTube - fair / allowed / legal use - is it OK to record music performances?

Quite often I take a GoPro / iPhone and record fragments of a music performance. Quite often I upload the content to YouTube. Quite often I receive following message: The copyright holder, which ...
2
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1answer
60 views

Parody or Infringement? (United States of America)

I am struggling with the difference between these definitions. Q: Is this a Parody or a Copyright Infringement? In a proposed pilot for a TV/Web show aimed at children for edutainment, one of the ...
2
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1answer
732 views

Personal copying of source code from a programming book

Many books on computer programming publish source code listings and example programs as part of the printed book to demonstrate some aspect of the language. When I'm learning from such books, I ...
2
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1answer
1k views

Length of movie clip for fair-use?

Is there some maximum length of a movie clip that can be publicly shared as "fair use?" E.g., the Youtube channel Movieclips shows clips with an average length of 2:30.
2
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4answers
91 views

Can a journalist publish emails sent to him/her by a diplomat at a foreign country's embassy, obtained while undercover, without infringing copyright?

Let's say the emails contain no personal or secret information, but merely state the diplomat's interpretation of his/her country's position on an issue.
2
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1answer
138 views

Can I use the rating of different restaurants from different websites like Yelp on my own website?

I am thinking of creating a website with restaurants ratings. You would be able to search for restaurants and in the result list you would see the name of the restaurant and the ratings of different ...
2
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1answer
96 views

Use of copyrighted character in software, as a joke

I sometimes insert copyrighted fictional character's images from a franchise on the rarest of error screens ("should never happen" type of thing). This time though, I work for a company, making their ...
2
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1answer
57 views

Using trademarked names as a reference in a commercial context

Is it possible to use a trademarked name as some sort of a reference for public available data (even when used in a commercial context)? Non-Commercial example: Let's say we have an app that displays ...
2
votes
1answer
77 views

Can maps from Google Maps be used in school presentation?

I'm doing a presentation for a class in college. Am I allowed to include images of Google Maps? To clarify, I'm not using the actual photographs or street views of google maps, just the street names. ...
2
votes
2answers
212 views

Large YouTuber: Copyright Lawsuit vs Fair Use

A channel with close to 1.5-million subscribers on YouTube, H3H3Productions, is being sued on the grounds that their video infringes another author's copyright. Their channel essentially reviews ...
2
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2answers
125 views

Can you reuse the text of a contract you've signed with one party with another party?

Relations between individuals and business entities are governed by law; what's not specified in the law, can be specified by a mutually-executed contract. Generally, one party provides the actual ...
2
votes
1answer
84 views

Is it legal to reproduce the image of AlexNet?

In the seminal paper, "ImageNet Classification with Deep Convolutional Neural Networks", there is an image of Alexnet as shown below: Is it allowed to reproduce a copy of the image or is it protected ...
2
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1answer
72 views

Copyright, fair use, and “news” sites copying articles from each other

This question is about English-language "news" sites (i.e. sites that have articles about something new that has happened in e.g. science, technology, or some other area of interest) which I am ...
2
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1answer
126 views

Copyright when translating an Interview

I'm interested in having some television interviews translated from French to English. I'd like to distribute a translated transcript. Would this be an infringement of copyright law? If so who gives ...
2
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1answer
52 views

Can I host free government or bank forms on my website?

If I host government forms or any other free forms on my website just for consolidation or ease-of-access, could I face any legal issues? I live in India.
2
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1answer
84 views

Song Lyric Sites

How do song lyrics sites (such as azlyrics.com) legally operate? It seems that they can't claim fair use because they are making money (ads) and that they are publishing complete song lyrics.
2
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1answer
107 views

How can I decide, whether I can include a particular image in my commercial blog posts and e-books?

Imagine I have a blog, on which people can download some free e-book. The purpose of the blog and e-book is to establish connection with potential buyers and eventually sell them something. Imagine ...