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lite1
02-10-2012, 06:17 AM
The small company that I work for will soon publish 6 books on B&N via PubIt, and one has the option of quoting an excerpt of up to 500 characters. PubIt help writes:
"If you have permission to quote a review or part of a review of your title, you can enter the text of that review here."

Are there circumstances where you do not need to get permission e.g. the review is considered to be in the public domain, or ???
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The print versions of our titles have been on Amazon and elsewhere for over a decade and some have quotes (on Amazon) from editorial reviews, however any permission that was obtained for using those was done by our print publisher. We'd rather not alert the print publisher that we are actively pursuing eBooks (we did retain the exclusive electronic rights decades ago).

We strongly prefer to play by the rules, but it seems that with proper attribution this is really not much of an issue. In a few cases the reviews are from 1988 and the publication might not even still be in existence. With more recent reviews, if advisable we probably can track down the publication and reviewer for permission.

As usual, thanks for cutting my learning curve.

<<Wasn't sure which sub-forum to post this in.>>

Old Hack
02-11-2012, 02:30 PM
Pubit makes it clear that you need permission to use reviews on its site; and reviews written in the late 1980s will only be in the public domain if the copyright owners have expressly placed them there.

If you use reviews without the appropriate permissions I'd say you'd be breaching Pubit's terms and conditions. That would not be a good thing.

If you have the electronic rights to the books concerned I don't understand why you don't want to alert the print publisher: the edition they published might enjoy some revived sales as a result of your endeavours, so you would probably be better off working with those print publishers. However, you don't need them to get permission to quote the reviews: you need to contact the publications where the reviews originally appeared and ask for permission from them.

I'm not sure that e-publishing is the best place for this question: while you're publishing an electronic version of the book the real issue here is permissions, whether they're required and how to do that. I'll move this to the Round Table for now, but if the room-mods there don't think it fits they might send it somewhere else.

lite1
02-11-2012, 08:43 PM
@Old Hack thx for clear information.
FYI and in response to your comment, the print version has been continuously for sale and does sell well via our print publisher, however their perception/belief is that eBook sales cannibalize print sales and like many publishers they have enormous regrets that their original contract agreement from decades ago does not cover electronic rights. For these reasons we prefer to interact with them as little as possible when it comes to interactions between eBook and print versions. Our own belief is that a more coordinated plan would benefit all title versions.

Jamesaritchie
02-11-2012, 09:29 PM
@Old Hack thx for clear information.
FYI and in response to your comment, the print version has been continuously for sale and does sell well via our print publisher, however their perception/belief is that eBook sales cannibalize print sales and like many publishers they have enormous regrets that their original contract agreement from decades ago does not cover electronic rights. For these reasons we prefer to interact with them as little as possible when it comes to interactions between eBook and print versions. Our own belief is that a more coordinated plan would benefit all title versions.

I may be misunderstanding you, but it sounds like you're on dangerous legal ground here. Have you run this thrugh a good IP attorney? If not, you should do so.

Michael Davis
02-12-2012, 12:04 AM
Most of the sites that review my books state upfront that you have permission to post as long as you ref their site or link back in the post. Sure if ya email them they will confirm then just save the email.

djf881
02-12-2012, 02:42 AM
Copyright law is to prevent the unauthorized duplication and exploitation of work. It is not intended to present the discussion of a work. You can tell people about your good reviews, and fair use clearly covers pull-quotes, citations, etc.

In the same way, and for a same reason, a reviewer doesn't need your permission to quote a sentence from your book for purposes of discussing it, even if they use that sentence for a purpose you don't like. Reviewers commonly quote from books to provide examples of ugly or clumsy prose, and authors can't do anything about it.

If you want to reprint a review, you do need permission, for the same reason that a publication needs your permission to publish an excerpt from your book.