Copyright law aims to:

Reward authors for their creative efforts
Provide an economic incentive to write and publish
Advance the learning, teaching and research ecosystem
Provide legal protection in case of infringement of the law

Just the last word, and you are done! End. You are done writing your masterpiece. You are proud of it. You feel that you have created something entirely yours: your idea, way of presenting the topic, concept. You know you want to show it off and let other people know it. You turn to publishers with a proposal for publishing and sales. Great success! You get several offers until you finally decide to trust one of them. You choose to publish your book together. You have a common goal, and you want to achieve it together. There is only a formality to print your work’s first and subsequent pages – signing the contract.

What to look for when signing a contract with a publisher?

The Author and the Publisher’s goals and vision or expectations may differ in terms of these principles. For this reason, it is necessary to work out a standard action scheme and individual for your relationship. It is worth remembering that these are primarily business negotiations understanding copyrights and publishing agreements. 

Therefore the need to reach a compromise and mutual concessions in essential contractual provisions are inevitable.

Questions to ponder:

First of all, think about what you want to allow the Publishers and how broad should this permission be? How much do you want to influence the way the book is published? Maybe you have your idea of ​​how to advertise a book publication and its promotion? How do you want to define your salary terms? You need to know the answers to these and many other questions to properly analyze the Publisher’s agreement.

copyrights and publishing agreements

We assume that the text of each book that we want to publish is a work within the meaning of the Act on Copyright and Related Rights. Even if it is a short piece of information in the form of a brochure, a technical text, a record of a procedure – it is safest to assume that we must fulfil our obligations under copyright law.

We conclude a contract with a person who has proprietary copyrights to the text. As a rule, the Author himself will be alive and concluding a contract with us.

Copyright is inherited, so in older texts, we need to find the Author’s heirs and determine which of them may be in charge of the copyright.

Checklists for copyrights.

  • Quotes: The use of individual text passages from a third-party author is possible in the context of a quotation if this is useful for emphasizing or explaining one’s content and the quotation is integrated into one’s work. In this case, it is essential to identify the quotation as such by indicating the source. If this step is not taken, it is plagiarism and a violation of copyright law. You are also welcome to read our detailed information on the right to quote.
  • Respect for personal rights: This aspect is not directly related to copyright, but it is of great importance. If you mention real people by name or are clearly recognizable from the description, they can take legal action if they recognize themselves and see themselves as vilified or slandered. If in doubt, have a lawyer clarify this aspect.

Title and title protection:

As the content of a work, titles are also subject to copyright. And since a memorable and unmistakable title is important for the success of a book, you should find a suitable title and check whether it already exists or whether a word or phrase is protected by patent.

  • Check used pictures: The Internet invites you to copy pictures, but it is precisely in this area that most legal cases currently exist. You should, therefore only use images from the common image databases such as fotolia or iStockphoto . The use of these images is legally secure and usually relatively inexpensive. Alternatively, you can also obtain written permission for use from the Author of an image and pay the fee directly to him. It would be best if you mention the Author by name in the imprint.
  • Any other Representations: Representations of a scientific or technical nature, such as drawings, plans, maps, sketches, tables and plastic representations. Linguistic works such as written works, speeches and computer programs

To know more about Authoring Services, copyrights and publishing agreements, connect with us today, we can give you walkthrough on our process, automation and publishers perspective.