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Old October 23 2010, 11:08 PM   #18
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Re: Is FanFiction Illegal?

The Klingon Ghoul wrote: View Post
This would say otherwise:

However, U.S. copyright law does allow for fair use of a copyrighted work by non-copyright-holders according to four tests. These tests take explicitly into consideration the purpose of the new use, nature of the copyrighted work, amount used in new work, and the market value effect of the new work. Whether a particular instance of use counts as "fair use" is determined by courts on a case-by-case basis.
Most major studios and production companies tolerate fan fiction, and some even encourage it to a certain extent. Paramount Pictures, for example, allowed the production of Star Trek: The New Voyages and Star Trek: The New Voyages 2 from Bantam Books, fan fiction anthologies which followed Bantam's Star Trek Lives! by reprinting stories from various fanzines; as well as Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, a series of ten anthologies from Pocket Books in which the short stories were selected through an open submissions process geared toward novice writers.
Both of those are from different parts of this page:

And of course I'm sure there is wiggle room either way, but it seems that for the most part fanfic is ok as long as you don't try to make a profit on it outside the proper channels (Pocket Books for Star Trek as an example). Or, unless the copyright holder specifically says they don't want any fanfic (As Ann Rice has done.)
Hmmm...can something be considered illegal if it is allowed by those it could be seen to affect or damage - at least where it comes to copyright? Obviously I'm not talking about a situation like giving someone drugs or statutory rape or anything, in those cases 'consent' isn't the issue. But Paramount allows fanfiction and fan productions.

But what would happen if Paramount suddenly changed their minds about fan productions? They'd have a lot of lawsuits on their hands, although they'd win most of them. I think a lot of fans would be disgusted however, and that would be a huge problem, a lot bigger than any perceived profit loss. I say perceived because I don't think it's there but whatever. So part of the issue is that it would cause a massive uproar with the fans if TPTB no longer allowed it.
"Quite possibly, the five Jem'Hadar could turn Data into a collection of four spasming limbs, one helpless torso, and one head that shouts insults at them like the Black Knight from the Monty Python sketch." -Timo Saloniemi
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