Why a Harry Potter Lexicon book is not fair use

LISNEWS has more than one posting on the Potter issue. I wanted to flag this one blog post because it discusses what impact the case has on reference works that analyze or index a copyrighted work. This is a very important topic to scholars and librarians because we would be losing alot if reference works could not be made that analyze a copyrighted work.

Excerpt from the blog post:

Although the finding was in favor of J.K. Rowling and her publisher in this particular instance, the finding went to great pains to state that—as a general rule—reference books of the sort that the Lexicon was trying to be are a protected fair use of copyrighted works.

and this excerpt from the blog where they are citing the court:

Notwithstanding Rowling’s public statements of her intention to publish her own encyclopedia, the market for reference guides to the Harry Potter works is not exclusively hers to exploit or license, no matter the commercial success attributable to the popularity of the original works. [...] The market for reference guides does not become derivative simply because the copyright holder seeks to produce or license one.

Full blog entry here.

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