Is it ok to reference names of real world people?

Asked by: Troy Decoteau

Can you use names of real people in fiction?

Using real people in your fiction—whether they are correctly named or not—can be legally hazardous. If an author includes enough details that a specific fictional character is identifiable as an actual person, that person could possibly pursue legal action.

Are you allowed to write about real people?

First, a simple rule. If what you write about a person is positive or even neutral, then you don’t have defamation or privacy issues. For instance, you may thank someone by name in your acknowledgements without their permission. If you are writing a non-fiction book, you may mention real people and real events.

How do you write real people in fiction?

How to Write Fiction Based on a True Story

  1. Be clear about your premise. …
  2. Remove yourself from the story. …
  3. Do your research. …
  4. Be flexible with facts. …
  5. Decide if you need permission. …
  6. Combine stories. …
  7. Shift the setting. …
  8. Edit extensively.

Can I use real places in my novel?

Yes. You can make up places. Just make sure to indicate in the foreword that everything in your writing is purely a work of fiction, especially when you use the names of famous places. Otherwise, you might confuse readers – especially the young ones – if such a place exists.

Can you be sued for writing a book about someone?

Understanding Invasion of Privacy

Even if everything you write about someone is completely true, you still need to consider her privacy. Invasion of privacy occurs when you publicly disclose private facts not related to public concern. As with defamation, only living people can sue for invasion of privacy.

Can I mention a famous person in my book?

The good news is that celebrity names are not copyright protected, just used as a name. If the name is only used to describe the person, it is not covered.

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Can you write a biography about someone without their permission?

In general, anyone can write a biography of someone without their approval as long as it is accurate and you don’t run afoul of the following legal principles: libel, invasion of privacy, misappropriation of the right of publicity, copyright infringement or breach of confidence.

Can you write a memoir anonymously?

As I see it, there’s no such thing as an anonymous memoir. You’re either telling your life story, or you’re writing a novel based on some events that actually took place.

How do you write a book without being sued for defamation?

Do tell the truth

  1. Don’t make claims based on assumptions or opinions. Adding “in my opinion” before a statement won’t save you in a libel case.
  2. Don’t embellish or exaggerate. If your book is nonfiction or memoir, then make sure it is truthful in every detail.
  3. Don’t overlook invasion of privacy laws.

Can you use real town names in a book?

Towns/City Names: You can use the names of real towns and cities without any problems. I tend to use real large cities and make up the names of smaller towns. It’s easier to “create” a town to your story’s specifications and needs. You can take liberties with real places by making up the names of streets or businesses.

Do you need permission to write about a place?

You do not need permission to include song titles, movie titles, TV show titles—any kind of title—in your work. You can also include the names of places, things, events, and people in your work without asking permission. These are facts.

Can I mention NASA in a book?

You can write about government agencies in any way you want, including fiction.

Is NASA content public domain?

Under United States copyright law, works created by the U.S. federal government or its agencies cannot be copyrighted. (This does not apply to works created by state or local governments.) Therefore, the NASA pictures are legally in the public domain.

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Is the name NASA copyrighted?

Practically speaking, companies “cannot use the NASA name as a title or as part of a title for any collection,” per NASA’s guidelines, and when using any NASA mark, their own company logos and other trademarks or branding “should be separate from the NASA materials on the product.” For instance, a company’s “product …

Can I use NASA logo on shirt?

The NASA Seal is not permitted on merchandise and is only permitted to be used by the NASA Administrator or Administrator’s office. The names, logos, devices or graphics of NASA programs may be used on merchandise subject to review and approval by NASA, and subject to the prohibitions on co-branding noted above.

Why is it called the NASA meatball?

In the “meatball” design, the sphere represents a planet, the stars represent space, the red chevron is a wing representing aeronautics (the latest design in hypersonic wings at the time the logo was developed), and then there is an orbiting spacecraft going around the wing.

What is the NASA Worm?

Known as the NASA logotype, and nicknamed the ‘worm’, the logotype was introduced in 1975 in an attempt to introduce a touch of modernity by replacing NASA’s circular blue, white and red insignia (aka the ‘meatball’), that James Modarelli had designed for the federal agency back in 1959, a year after its inception.

Are NASA images royalty free?

NASA content (images, videos, audio, etc) are generally not copyrighted and may be used for educational or informational purposes without needing explicit permissions.

Can I use NASA images in my book?

For use of NASA images in books, clearances may be necessary for images that include any NASA logos or NASA employees to be used as cover art or in promotional content. Otherwise, NASA imagery can be generally used editorially within published works that are not promotional in nature.

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Can I use NASA photos on my website?

ANSWER: Generally, yes. You can link to any NASA Web site and use NASA images on your site provided their use does not imply that NASA is endorsing any organization, person, or commercial product or service.

Are NASA photographs public domain?

Under United States copyright law, works created by the U.S. federal government or its agencies cannot be copyrighted. (This does not apply to works created by state or local governments.) Therefore, the NASA pictures are legally in the public domain.

Are Hubble photos public domain?

NASA and Hubble images are generally in the public domain.

How do you cite images from NASA?

Cite a NASA webpage in MLA format

For MLA style citations, the basic format will look like this: Author Last Name, First name. “Title of the Article.” Title of the Website, Publisher (if different than website name), date published, URL.

Are pictures of the moon copyrighted?

Once the astronauts reached the moon, they proceeded to image the lunar surface as never before. Because these pictures were created by NASA astronauts, who took the pictures as part of their mission with a U.S. federal government agency, the public can use these images free of charge.

Is Apollo 11 trademarked?

The trademark in his name is reserved by Purdue Research Foundation of the Purdue University which the first lunar astronaut graduated. The NASA logo on the sleeve of the spacesuit was registered as a separate trademark.

Are pictures of planets copyrighted?

Because NASA is an agency of the US Government, those photos are not copyrightable. They’re part of what’s referred to as the Public Domain. That means anyone can do anything with NASA’s space photos; we all own them.