1. Beth
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    Beth Member

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    Using a song title for a book

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Beth, Sep 3, 2009.

    Hello all,
    I have this idea of using the title from a Prince's song as the title for my novel. I have other options but *that* title would fit just perfect (Darling Nikki). The song is mentioned in the story and the main female character is called Nikki.
    What problems do you think I might have if I use the title? Who should I ask permission to? Record label?
    I know it's gonna be hard to obtain it, but I want to try at least before opting for a different title.
     
  2. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    It's done all the time, no permission needed. One of the more famous examples is "I know why the caged bird sings" (or something very close to that. It was a poem then a novel.
     
  3. Beth
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    Beth Member

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    Really? That's great news to me. At least regarding the American part of the matter. Now I have to see what my country's rules say.
     
  4. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    General copyright law is that titles cannot be copyrighted.
     
  5. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    If you have any more questions regarding this type of thing, you're actually better off looking them up on the copyright website. Not everyone here has accurate information, and we're all in different countries, so even if what we know is accurate, it may not apply to you.
     
  6. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    if italy is also a signatory to the berne convention, the copyright laws there would be the same as, or similar to: www.copyright.gov

    in any case, it's done all the time, since titles can't be copyrighted anywhere in the world, as far as i can tell... many of mary clark higgins' titles are the titles of copyrighted songs, or lines taken from songs in the public domain...
     
  7. Beth
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    Beth Member

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    Great news guys... thanks!
     
  8. Operaghost
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    Operaghost Contributing Member

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    there is no reason why you can;t use a song title for a book, nor any reason why you canlt reference a song either, after all its quite natural for a character to have a favourite song and as long as its just the title you are using there is no problem, the issue will come if you use the lyrics directly however as this then gets into copywrite territory
     
  9. Yum Tasty Words
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    Yum Tasty Words New Member

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    Yes lyrics and quotes are often used as the titles of book. More often its quotes.
     

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