Posted in project

A Question of Copyright


One thing that’s been at the back of my mind throughout this project is the idea of copyright; and it’s the complexity of this is one of the greatest hurdles this app faces.

The simple fact of the matter is, that I don’t have the resources to purchase the rights to all of the books I will be referencing in the app. Ideally, that’s exactly what I’d do, and it would allow me to create an e-reader kind of app, where users can fully explore the books. But that would cost me a huge amount of money and would require a level of rights acquisition I just don’t have.

At this moment in time, my hope is that, as a kind of demonstration of what the app could be, just having extracts up to the legal copyright limit will be enough. By picking out key sections of the books, I’m hoping to satisfy the needs of the apps remit (engaging the LGBTQ community through literature) and keep me out of some legal issues!

A couple of the books are out of copyright, however. The Picture of Dorian Grey and Orlando are old enough that obtaining right isn’t an issue, so it’s entirely possible I’ll be able to enter these books in their entirety.

On a side-note, I’ve also thought of including a buy-it link on those extracts of the books I can’t get rights for. On the one hand, this means that users can purchase the books if they’ve enjoyed what they’ve read, but on the other I feel like it’s entering into some kind of relationship with retailers, and delivers a consumerism to the app that I don’t really want. It’s a conundrum.

All of this is still on the understanding that I’ll be able to code the app in the first place…

It’s something I’ll continue to think over, maybe do a bit of research when I have the time, and I’ll let you know what I decide to go with.


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