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Fan Fiction and Copyright: Outsider Works and Intellectual Property Protection [Hardcover]

Aaron Schwabach

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Book Description

July 31 2011 0754679039 978-0754679035
Fan fiction - stories and novels written by fans of existing characters, and shared mainly on the internet - has long been a nearly invisible form of outsider art, but over the past decade it has grown exponentially in volume and in legal importance. Because of its nature, authorship, and underground status, fan fiction stands at an intersection of key issues regarding property, sexuality, and gender. This book examines the various types of fan-created content, most of which are to some extent derivative works, and asks whether and to what extent they can be protected as transformative uses. Author Aaron Schwabach discusses disputes between authors and their fans over the latters' use of copyrighted characters, online publication of fiction resembling copyright work, and in the case of J.K. Rowling and a fansite webmaster, the compiling of a reference work detailing an author's fictional universe - a work that Rowling once praised and then succeeded, briefly, in suppressing. Offering more thorough coverage of many such controversies than has ever been available elsewhere, and discussing fan works from the United States, Brazil, Russia, India, and China, "Fan Fiction and Copyright" advances the understanding of transformative use and points the way toward a "safe harbor" for fan fiction.

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Product Description


'Aaron Schwabach takes readers from Aang to Zorro, exploring the intricacies of copyright in characters and the many ways in which fans respond creatively to existing works, using the characters and situations to tell new stories to themselves and others. His wide knowledge of popular culture and careful examination of existing case law and non-litigated disputes involving fans and authors makes this book a unique resource for those interested in the intersection of law and literature.'Rebecca Tushnet, Georgetown University, USA'Aaron Schwabach tackles a complex topic with great clarity and not a little wry humour.' Managing Information'The book's strength is its fairly careful discussion of important cases and controversies in a field where there is relatively little case law.' Times Higher Education'Aaron Schwabach's Fan Fiction and Copyright is the first book to address the legal issues surrounding " outsider works" and to describe how the law is struggling to adapt to these products of the internet age.' Times Literary Supplement'Fan Fiction and Copyright is a very useful introduction to a marginal but emerging area of intellectual property law.'Law Library Journal'Eminently readable and engaging, bringing a depth of analysis that has so far been lacking in other shorter treatments of this issue, and littered with helpful examples and illustrations, the book reaches a typical legal conclusion: fan works probably don't infringe copyright, but, well, it depends. The value in this book, as with most legal analysis, isn't in the answer so much as in the reasoning that gets you there. This book's value in that respect in considerable.'Transformative Works & Cultures

About the Author

Aaron Schwabach is Professor of Law at the Thomas Jefferson School of Law, where he teaches subjects including internet law. His previous books include Intellectual Property: A Reference Handbook (ABC-CLIO, 2007) and Internet and the Law: Technology, Society, and Compromises (ABC-CLIO, 2005).

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun reading Dec 29 2012
By E. Gardiner - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
If you are curious about copyright problems with fanfiction this is the book for you. It is written by an awesome professor of law who reads fanfiction ( possibly written some as well) so it's not an outsiders look but an insiders one.

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