1. writerwannabe13
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    writerwannabe13 Member

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    Is it okay to use Tweeting in a story or does it go into the copyright infringment

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by writerwannabe13, Sep 7, 2012.

    problem.


    Twitter is used by some people everyday. IF I used twitter and tweeting in a story doesn't that mean I need twitter's permission?


    If so can I make up a fake site like soundboard for twitter and instead of Tweeting I could use bouncing or okay to use twitter and tweeting?
     
  2. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    what?
     
  3. writerwannabe13
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    writerwannabe13 Member

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    With copyright issues like they are today. Can use actually use the terms twitter or tweeting or do I need to make something up?
     
  4. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    You should be fine, assuming you mean that your characters are sending and receiving tweets. Facebook is being mentioned more and more in fictional works. Unless your story is about Twitter itself, you should be fine -- that is, I assume you are writing a story and the characters utilize Twitter in their everyday lives.
     
  5. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    I'd be more concerned over dating your novel, if Twitter turns out to be a fleeting fad. I don't see how you could be sued for using the words Twitter or tweet in a story, any more than using the term Big Mac. Sue Grafton (and many, many other authors) have been using the Big Mac in their writing for many years.
     
  6. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I see. I thought names are not copyrighted anyway, so why not as long as you're not tarnishing their reputation (eg committing libel)? Otherwise many books would not be able to mention McDonald's or using an iPhone and opening Firefox or driving a Ford or a Mercedes - and etc.
     
  7. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    I believe that the issue would be trademark, not copyright. If your story used Twitter as a major element - say, you depicted corrupt employees at Twitter, or you had a plot line where a security hole on Twitter resulted in something bad happening, or someone got addicted to Tweeting and something bad happened...there would be an issue there, I'd think. Or if you named a vampire novel "Tweets and Twilight", say, you'd probably face trademark suits on two fronts.

    I don't think that just mentioning a service brand name would be actionable in any way. On the other hand, I generally go with the "they have bigger lawyers" philosophy, and would prefer to avoid any risk at all.
     
  8. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Trademark would not be an issue, because a story does not compete with Twitter. Yes, defamation (libel) issues could come about, but that has nothing to do with the use of the name itself. It has to do with damaging their reputation.

    Twitter addiction would probably not be actionable, because Internet addiction in general is widely reported, and unless you wrote that Twitter was uniquely addictive, a judge would probably find it a frivolous lawsuit. But you would be close enough to the line that consulting with a literary attorney would be a very wise move.
     
  9. Squeakyfiend
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    Squeakyfiend Member

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    Why not just create your own fictional social network? Then you wouldn't have to worry!
     

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