Top 11 Reasons to attend TAA’s 28th Annual Textbook & Academic Authoring Conference

Have you registered yet? Here are the top 11 reasons why you need to attend TAA’s 28th Annual Textbook & Academic Authoring Conference, June 19-20, in Las Vegas:

Follow the conference on Twitter using hashtag, #2015TAA.
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See you in Las Vegas!

The most useful textbook & academic writing posts of the week: December 12, 2014

Do you ever find yourself at a lossWrite without fear. Edit without mercy. for what to say? Maybe the words are swirling around in your head but they refuse to form together to make a sentence that is anything meaningful or coherent? This quote, “Write without fear. Edit without mercy.”, is a reminder that sometimes, even with words swirling around in your head, you just have to go for it and get it all out on paper no matter how it forms together on the page. Then, when it is time to edit, spare no mercy. Cut everything back and keep only what is truly needed. And with that I say, happy writing! [Read more…]

Copyright: Why a memorialized record of good faith matters

copyright collage artThere are few absolutes or bright lines when it comes to copyright matters. So much is left to the judgment of the court or jury in a copyright infringement case, the boundaries so amorphous, the tests so subjective, that ensuring that you are more sympathetic than the plaintiff can go a long way toward moving the case one way or another.

The threshold question of the copyrightability of plaintiff’s work, the credibility assigned to any given copyright registration, the application of the four-factor test for fair use, the [Read more…]

Appeals court reverses GSU e-reserve fair use ruling

copyrightOn Friday, Oct. 17, 2014 the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit in Atlanta reversed an earlier District Court’s ruling in Cambridge University Press et al v. Patton et al, that digital excerpts of books provided to students at Georgia State University (GSU) were protected by fair use.

In its reversal, the Eleventh Circuit panel ruled that the District Court erred in ruling that GSU’s use of portions of 43 copyrighted works was shielded by fair use. It also vacated orders awarding costs and attorneys’ fees to GSU and remanded the case back to the District Court. [Read more…]

When getting rights clearance is tough

copyright collage artWe’ve all been there. You have the perfect photo . . . verse . . . song lyrics . . . vignette . . . you name it . . . to open your book or a chapter within it. Having labored long and hard to locate just the thing, you are now certain that nothing else will do. There’s only one problem. It’s not yours and either you can’t determine who owns the rights, or you can’t figure out how to reach them, or they’re dead or out of business, or they won’t answer you. [Read more…]

Supreme Court rules in favor of plaintiff in copyright infringement case

On May 19, the US Supreme Court decided in favor of Paula Petrella in the copyright infringement case Petrella v Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc., stating that laches “cannot be invoked as a bar to Petrella’s pursuit of a claim for damages brought within…the three-year window.”

(Laches means that a legal right or claim will not be enforced if a long delay in asserting the right or claim has hurt the opposing party as a sort of “legal ambush.”)

“This Supreme Court decision resolves an issue that had been the subject of debate for decades and removes once and for all one of the defenses that had historically been raised to defeat copyright infringement claims,” said Stephen Gillen, an attorney with Wood Herron & Evans LLP. “Authors are now in a slightly better position when it comes to policing the unauthorized use of their copyrighted works.”

Read the court’s full opinion.

Register with the Authors Registry to receive secondary royalty payments from foreign organizations

The Authors Registry is a not-for-profit organization that distributes secondary royalties from foreign organizations to U.S. authors. The Registry was founded in 1995 by a consortium of U.S. authors’ organizations: The Authors Guild, The American Society of Journalists & Authors, the Dramatists Guild, and the Association of Authors’ Representatives. To date, the Authors Registry has distributed over $22.5 million in royalties to over 10,000 authors living in the United States.

“Each year, hundreds of new authors are added to our lists and we attempt to locate and contact them to help them receive these royalties. We have great success rates, but sometimes these royalties go unclaimed,” said Terry King, Operations Manager at the Authors Registry.

The payments come from foreign and domestic organizations that collect secondary royalties for the use of authors’ works. They are collected from organizations such as the Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society, part of an extended collective licensing system in the U.K., and LIRA, the organization with the authority to collect and disperse fees for public library lending rights in the Netherlands.

To ensure that you receive any of these secondary royalties due to you, register with the Authors Registry by completing their Collection Authorization form here. You can also contact Terry King at 212-563-5904 and staff@authorsregistry.org or visit them on the web at www.authorsregistry.org.

PODCAST: The 10 Worst Legal Mistakes a Textbook or Academic Author Can Make

Zick Rubin

Publishing lawyer Zick Rubin provides a countdown of the 10 worst legal mistakes that a textbook or academic author can make. Learn the legal traps that can be found in a range of areas, including provisions in publishing contracts, collaboration agreements, and copyright and permission issues.

[Read more…]

Self-publishing workshop offered at TAA’s 27th annual authoring conference

2014 TAA Conference logoTAA’s 2014 Conference on Textbook & Academic Writing in Baltimore, MD, June 20-21, will include a new track on “Self-Publishing”. The track will feature a workshop designed for both novice and veteran authors who want to experience a hands-on approach to marketing their book to readers and buyers. Attendees will learn how to raise money to get a book printed and marketed, what to look for in hiring an editor, and how to find a publisher for a manuscript. [Read more…]

Listen to podcasts on writing, editing, contracts, time management & more

Podcast LibraryTAA members have access to a library of 60-90 minute podcasts on topics such as writing, editing, contracts, royalties, taxes, copyright, time management and more, presented by a variety of industry experts. This resource is free for members. Join TAA today for as little as $15.

Topics include:

Textbook Writing | Textbook Publishing | Contracts & Royalties | Taxes | Copyright | Marketing | Supplements | Indexing | Ebooks & Open Access | Textbook Proposals | Academic Writing | Academic Publishing | Academic Editing | Academic Books | Grant Writing | Time Management | Social Media for Academics | Tenure & Promotion [Read more…]