Monday, July 8, 2013

Creating Book Quiz App

Dear Rich: I'd like to make an iPhone app that would consist of thousands of questions each with four answers from different books. The quizzes/questions actually ARE about the books  and would contain copyrighted terms, important sentences or names.  These quizzes are meant to be taken AFTER a user reads the book, so we don't compete with book authors, nor is that our intention. We also intend to clearly give credit for every single book to author that wrote it. Here is an example and here is another example of sites that already exist and are similar to what we want to make (difference: they make money by users spending more time on their site, we make money by charging $.99 for extra features). Well, our idea is for people to read books MORE and take quizzes after them.  If you keep the questions varied, take little from each book -- as in the two examples you provided -- you're probably fine. But because we don't know how much borrowing you will be doing, we're unable to bless your endeavor. Of course, we support your goal -- people reading more books -- but, as the cases cited in this recent Dear Rich entry demonstrate, your altruistic goals will not excuse an infringement. Ditto for providing attribution. As for your claim that you're not competing with authors, we don't think you are ... but that's ultimately up to a court to decide.

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