Use of Copyright on Copyright pages.

A recent posting in Promotions includes a PDF version of a book that seems to be constructed to write in. One would assume that the buyer would wish to print it out so they can write in it. But the entire Copyright from the printed versions of the book are also in the PDF. It's the normal Copyright > "... not be reproduced by any means ... without contacting ... for written permission. " I would have thought that something that needs to be printed out for use, would not have the same Copyright?

Comments

  • I Am Not A Lawyer. This Is Not Advice.

    In that sort of a case, "Fair Use" comes into play. If the purpose (i.e. utility) of an item involves its printing, then to print it for a single user's one-time use is a fair use.

    What would be prohibited would be the reproduction of the work for resale or for distribution of any kind, including not-for-profit. Also, it is anticipated that the printed version is not to be retained beyond the single user's one-time use.

    As a general principle, a seller implicitly offers a warranty of fitness (usefulness) on items sold, so to sell an item that is only useful if printed, and then to prohibit printing, would violate that implied warranty of fitness. https//www.law.cornell.edu/ucc/2/2-315

    On the one hand, the author may have carelessly copied boiler-plate restrictions without thinking them through, or the author may have anticipated a single-use printing, and no others. It would certainly behoove the author to clarify his intent, because legal ambiguities are usually determined in the manner least advantageous to the person who wrote them, e.g. Grove v. Charbonneau Buick-Pontiac, Inc., 240 N.W.2d 853 (N.D. 1976)

    " 4. If the language of a contract (including a prize-winning contest) is ambiguous such that it leaves an uncertainty as to its meaning, the language should be interpreted most strongly against the party who caused the uncertainty to exist. Section 9-07-19, NDCC."(https://www.ndcourts.gov/court/opinions/9180.htm )

    Hope that helps.


  • Of course, you are making the assumption (*ahem*) that the book must be printed out in order to be read. Some people instead read eBooks on electronic devices made for that purpose.
  • As I said, it's more of a book to make notes in, not just to be read. Many of the pages are blank, with headings. That the PDF book no doubt needs to be printed out to make full use of it, then the Copyright should say that that is permissible, but with clauses. This is what the UK laws say >>   https://www.gov.uk/guidance/exceptions-to-copyright
  • Then fair use and the principle of warranty of fitness should apply. Fear not, the copyright police will not knock down your door.
  • Printing out an entire book is far from being Fair Use. As I have said, the Copyright in it also says that the reproducing of it at all is prohibited, unless they ask the creator for permission. With a book that needs to be printed out by those who buy it, so they can actually use it, the Copyright should say it's permissible to print out one copy. The Copyright in the PDF version is the unaltered one from the Printed book.

    But anyway, I wont keep repeating myself. I wont be buying it.

  • If the book must be printed to be useful, then the warranty of suitability makes it a fair use, with restrictions. As above. I am still not a lawyer.
  • Skoob_ym said:
    If the book must be printed to be useful, then the warranty of suitability makes it a fair use, with restrictions. As above. I am still not a lawyer.
    It would be kinder to the purchaser of this book to make its permissible usage unambiguously clear rather than put the burden on the reader of determining what might fall under a “warranty of suitability,” a term I cannot find attached to copyright.

    A good model is the Dover Pictorial Archive series. Permissible usage of the images is spelled out explicitly on the copyright page of each book.
    __________________________________________
    Black Cat Studios http://www.black-cat-studios.com/
  • A lot of paid for copyable content is made available for use by the educational establishments, and the Copyrights makes it very plain what they can be used for, and how. E-books are a funny animal because often the Copyrights state, Not to be stored in any manner digitally.
  • Skoob_ym said:
    If the book must be printed to be useful, then the warranty of suitability makes it a fair use, with restrictions. As above. I am still not a lawyer.
    It would be kinder to the purchaser of this book to make its permissible usage unambiguously clear rather than put the burden on the reader of determining what might fall under a “warranty of suitability,” a term I cannot find attached to copyright.

    A good model is the Dover Pictorial Archive series. Permissible usage of the images is spelled out explicitly on the copyright page of each book.
    I absolutely agree. Clarity is vital, especially in a case like this.

    Given that clarity was not provided: I do not know that there is black letter law on suitability regarding copyright per se, but I believe -- and I am only a lawyer in my own armchair -- that a judge would permit a defendant in a suit to rely upon the UCC; or would at least recognize the inherent ambiguity, and as with Charbonneau Buick, the ambiguity would be read in favor of the party who did not draft it.

    I could be wrong, of course.
Sign In or Register to comment.