Monday, February 6, 2012

Using Quotes and Seeing Ghosts

Dear Rich: I put together a book with quotes from various famous individuals and my own professional photos to encourage inspirational thought. I do not want to produce the book before I can clear the licenses. How does one go about clearing the licensing for that? Some authors, such as Seneca lived around 75 B.C. I guess for these authors I don't need a clearance? You guessed right. There is little chance that Seneca will rise from the grave (Dracula-style) and retain Boies, Schiller to smite all those who have malapropped his quotations. In any case, any reputable law firm would inform him that his texts, all published long before 1923 are in the public domain. As for the rest of your quotes, we think you're fine to use them for reasons we expressed two years ago and which we're too lazy to rewrite (and thereby up our SEO). You may wonder whether you can trust our response because as Seneca says, "advice is worth what you pay for it." But keep in mind he made that remark before the existence of freebies.