62 votes
Accepted

Can I use my own Stack Exchange answer in a book?

Yes, that’s allowed. Under the Stack Exchange terms of service, content you upload is licensed to Stack Exchange Inc. on a non-exclusive basis under CC-BY-SA 4.0. The terms of service do not give ...
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  • 20.6k
16 votes
Accepted

What is a binary form in software BSD license (and other licenses that didn't define it)?

Ultimately, these terms would have to be interpreted by a court in order to get clarity. But the phrasing “source or binary form” should likely be understood as “not just source form, but any form of ...
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  • 17.1k
12 votes
Accepted

Fair Use Re: Sending people copies of articles that have been deleted from the Internet

I must agree with the answer by Michael Seifert that fair use cases can be complex, and are usually highly fact dependent. They are indeed decided on a case-by-case basis. That said, I would not ...
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  • 89.8k
11 votes
Accepted

What parts of cracking (tampering with the copyrighted software) are actually illegal?

It is not correct to say that drugs are, for example, broadly illegal in many western countries Some specific drugs, or specific categories of drugs, are illegal in certain circumstances, by ...
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  • 89.8k
11 votes
Accepted

Are copyright licenses as binding as some particular rules stated by the creator of intellectual property?

In principle, every single copyright license allows someone to do something that plain copyright law wouldn't allow them to do. Very often there are conditions: They are allowed to do X, which plain ...
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  • 24.6k
9 votes
Accepted

Find out if "Further reproduction prohibited without permission" document is original

It does not matter whether the document is authentic, because it is true, by law. Under copyright law, you must have permission of the copyright holder to copy any protected work (original creative ...
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  • 157k
9 votes

Is the Scarborough Fair Melody Really in the Public Domain?

Yes Both melody and lyrics source back to the middle ages, as for instance described here. The difficulty could be to make sure you rely your derived work on a variant that is really in the public ...
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  • 567
8 votes

Fair Use Re: Sending people copies of articles that have been deleted from the Internet

Fair use cases are notorious for being a morass of grey areas that are decided on a case-by-case basis, and the only really definitive analysis is the one done by a judge or jury after you get sued ...
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6 votes

Find out if "Further reproduction prohibited without permission" document is original

Trick question: you can't read the single original copy "legally", because it's stored on a hard disk in a datacenter and you have to make multiple copies of it to even get it to your ...
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  • 1,107
5 votes

Find out if "Further reproduction prohibited without permission" document is original

Even if someone already violated the direction not to make further copies, that does not make it unlawful to read the document. Just as if someone makes and sells a pirate copy of a book, it is not ...
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  • 89.8k
4 votes
Accepted

Do I need to give credit to the original writer if I rewrote something in my own words?

Ideas are not Subject to Copyright Copyright does not protect ideas. This is true in the US, in the UK, and under the copyright laws of every country that I know of. Article 2 paragraph 8 of the Berne ...
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  • 89.8k
4 votes

Is each version of a software considered a "derivative work"?

Four Yes, each version is a derivative work, as mentioned in https://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ14.pdf The following are examples of the many different types of derivative works: ... A new version ...
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  • 223
4 votes

Can I use my own Stack Exchange answer in a book?

I also modified the answer, and added to it, but some original passages remain. If the content is strictly your own plain text and equations that's one thing, but some posts may also contain block ...
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  • 249
3 votes

Is the Scarborough Fair Melody Really in the Public Domain?

Note: The OP's linked tune on Wikimedia is not the Simon & Garfunkel tune. It's nowhere near, totally different melody. For any traditional song you need to source several versions & derive a ...
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  • 305
2 votes
Accepted

Legality of sending people copies of copyrighted articles

The copyright holder is always free to make (or authorize the making of) copies, and to send them to whoever s/he pleases. If the author has retained the copyright, as authors often do, then the ...
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  • 89.8k
2 votes
Accepted

Can I convert an emoji to PNG or SVG and use them as an clipart in my videos,games,logos etc

The shape of an emoji is an artistic creation and so is protected by copyright,unless it is judged to be too simple to have the required degree of originality for copyright protection (which may be ...
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  • 89.8k
2 votes

Are instructions for creating a derivative work, themselves a derivative work?

A description of how to do something is itself an independent creative work, and is protected by copyright. E.g. if you write a program that controls a milling machine, that program is protected no ...
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  • 157k
2 votes
Accepted

Can a typeface always distributed in digital form be recreated by hand?

Typefaces are not protected by copyright. If you extract the typeface from the font file, e.g. by printing it, it is now just a typeface, and thus not protected. https://web.archive.org/web/...
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2 votes

Can I use my own Stack Exchange answer in a book?

I believe there is another issue you may have to consider, and that's your contract with the book publisher. You have already granted some rights to Stack Exchange, and that means you cannot assign ...
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2 votes

Copyrightability of Third Party Technical Specifications

Such a document is protected by copyright the moment it is fixed in a tangible form (which includes on paper and in a computer file). Your creative expression would be protected. But the facts of what ...
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  • 89.8k
1 vote

It is illegal to reverse engineer proprietary file formats?

germanyeuropean-union In Germany (and similarly in the entire EU since Germany implements EU directives in this case), Reverse Engineering is legal IFF the thing you are Reverse Engineering is ...
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1 vote

Can minors publish open source software?

A contract with a minor is valid until the minor or their legal guardian void the contract. The contract can be void until some time after the minor is not a minor anymore. So for the question that ...
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  • 24.6k
1 vote

How much change to a company’s copyrighted picture is needed?

The question has two false presuppositions. The first is that copyright only prohibits exact copying, and you can reproduce inexactly as long as the result is "different enough". Actually, ...
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  • 157k
1 vote

Copyright situation of small parts of different YouTube videos put together creatively?

Creating such a video is using the copyrighted content of others. This may or may not be copyright infringement. This is important to YouTube channel operators because the YouTube TOS states: ... the ...
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  • 89.8k
1 vote

Do I need to give credit to the original writer if I rewrote something in my own words?

This sounds like an untested edge case. If you harvest text from a website and redistribute the work in exactly the same form, that is copyright infringement (I assume that doesn't need explaining). ...
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  • 157k

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