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LegalGround >> New Copyright question


7/14/11 4:56 PM
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thebisket
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Member Since: 9/10/09
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 I am looking at writing a book on what written on a something on the internet.  It was posted in a public forum like a blog with multiple people posting on the same thread to tell a story. 
If I was to collect some of the comments, but not directly copy them, and add my own opinions on them, plus fill in story, would this be legal for me to go and publish it? likely in an ebook category. 
Some of the story has to deal with some statements that were not proven in a court of law, but were some evidence for it.  What you say?
7/14/11 10:30 PM
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Spc Lee Lohff
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Member Since: 5/31/04
Posts: 268
Speaking in generalities coupled with poor writing= I can't even begin to attempt to answer your question. Could you clarify?
7/15/11 8:34 AM
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BarkLikeADog
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^Yeah, you've been deliberately vague to the point of making it impossible to answer you correctly, but what I can say based on what you wrote:

1. The fact that it's a publicly accessible forum means nothing; almost assuredly whoever is paying for the website owns the copyright to the content on it. It's usually written in the terms of usage that you have to cross somewhere along the line before you can use the site.

2. If all the writing is clearly in your own words, it generally isn't going to matter what inspired you to write it, & your copyright should be alright. Consider for example The Amateur Magician's Handbook & The Idiot's Guide To Magic; both books are going to have essentially the same information covering the same tricks, but as long as it's clearly unique writing, it's AOK.

3. If the subject is clearly based on a known real story, & you don't have permission from everyone involved in your version of it, you can pretty much count on everyone suing you & draining your funds whether they have a legitimate case or not. FWIW this is not (necessarily) a copyright issue.
7/15/11 1:22 PM
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thebisket
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 Sorry guys
Lemme try again.  A place I frequent regularly has a conversation in a thread that spans a great length. 
The conversation / thread is between a great number of people and it tell a great story, the problem is that the story is hard to follow at times and I want to take it, condense it, add my own takes and notes, and info, then publish in like an ebook.  The goal was to put it in my own words. 
If it's a real story, how do I avoid the lawsuits.  I mean how does newspapers and "unofficial biographies" write stuff without consent (I'm assuming)
The impression I'm getting so far is I should talk to the owner of hte place, see if they will grant some copyright, then do something to try to get the people invovled to not sue me?
7/18/11 12:19 PM
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jbapk
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There's a fair use exception for news reporting.

This is a hard question to answer without knowing what you're changing, adding, etc.
7/18/11 3:52 PM
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Fake Pie
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Member Since: 12/2/05
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I am afraid of any written work you might produce based on your complete inability convey the simplest of information on this thread.

Just messing with you. Sort of. Not much else to add that hasn't been said already.

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