The Copyright Handbook: What Every Writer Needs to Know (11th Edition) by Stephen Fishman, JD
The book is primarily aimed at writers, but the information is useful to anyone dealing with copyright issues.
The author starts with the basics and goes on to deal with registering copyrights, copyright notices, ownership and what copyright protects, dealing with copyrighted material as property in business and personal interactions such as transferring ownership, marriage, divorce, death and so on. He covers contractual issues such as partnerships, collaborative works, works for hire, etc. He also covers the use of other people’s copyrighted works in one’s own writing, permissions, taxation, and infringement.
Even the topics like ‘Transferring Copyright Ownership’ and ‘International Copyright Protection’ are addressed in sufficient detail. The sections on copyrights in the online world were of even great interest as the chapter for online works also has detailed information on how deep links are treated, etc.
The section on Fair Use was very helpful as it explained as clearly as possible the circumstances under which you can copy a copyrighted work as long as it met the Fair Use guidelines. The book comes with many tear out forms with the electronic versions of the forms on CD-ROM. Common and not so common topics are addressed.
This is a very valuable addition to anyone’s library, especially those who write professionally. An area I can alert you to is that this book only covers copyright of writing. Sound recordings and Computer programs are also subject to copyright, but are not really covered in this book.
All in all, this is a very important book if you have any kind of work that you want to copyright or if you are considering the implications of copying somebody’s work under the Fair Use guidelines. The book is by no means an easy read, but the author does an excellent job of explaining this fairly complicated subject in plain English for the ordinary person.