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Using the name of a band and titles of records in a book Copyright

Discussion in 'Copyright, Trademark, Patent Law' started by tip49, Mar 8, 2017.

  1. tip49

    tip49 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Hi,
    This isn't an event that has already occurred, I'm trying to protect myself against future events, hope that's OK on this message board.
    I'm in the UK but about to self-publish a novel on Amazon, so the market place will be mostly America and Europe. The novel, at the moment, includes mentions of songs being played by a Beatles tribute band in a bar, and a series of Abba songs at a wedding disco. The songs really do add to the humour and atmosphere of the action in the story.
    I'd heard that titles aren't covered by copyright, but thought I'd check anyway so I spoke to a British IP lawyer who said that even using song titles is a grey area because some titles are so identifable with the lyrics, that they could be judged to be covered by the same copyright. That's scary enough to make me re-think the whole idea of including them.
    However, having done a lot of internet searching (I know, dangerous), the majority of sites, even legal ones, stress that song titles aren't covered by copyright. And there are zillions of books out there that follow that advice, with song titles splattered through them.
    Are all these authors just risking it? Or is the area not that grey anyway so I can go ahead and publish too?
    There are one or two explicit scenes in my book, I'm not sure whether that would have any bearing on whether or not someone might sue me for having their song 'playing' in the background.
    I'm really confused, any help would be gratefully received.
    Cheers,
    Tip49
     
  2. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    You're posting from the island nation known as the UK.
    We know nothing specific about UK laws.
    We discuss the simple US laws.

    You need a website that discusses UK laws or to see one of your fine solicitors.
     
    tip49 likes this.

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