Is this legal - Citing short segments of other people's free content, providing you credit them...

by 8 comments
So I want to add some content into an eBook, content that is from free sources, written by other people.

We're talking a few sentences here and there, literally snapshots, ultra light tips etc. Nothing heavy, nothing exclusive.

I want to put this content in my eBook, but it's obviously not my intention to rip people off. Sure, the info is freely available, and I could just rewrite it, but I prefer to be as integral as possible when it comes to such things.

So, my idea was this:

Let's say I start a new section with my own wording...

Now we're going to look at how to do "x". According to Expert A from website "Z", here's what you need to do:

(expert's quote)
"tip a, do this and that, this will happen, that will happen, you can also try this..."
- source:
Is that illegal? Is that reasonable? I have several varying quotes (or citations) that I would like to use...should I take a week or so out of my shcedule and contact all these people via email and ask for permission? Is that even necessary?

Cheers for your help...


When doing a dissertation, or pretty much any further education essays, one of the requirements is to use citations based on your surely this sort of thing can't be illegal per se?

Is there something I am missing, am I just being paranoid?
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  • Profile picture of the author Tim Franklin
    This is not legal advice.

    Hi, there is an accepted format for using this type of content, citing source is one of the accepted formats, I would do some research into the most commonly used, terminology.

    I would say for instance, that you would at the minimum use a third person perspective, so you would not use a first person quote, then show the citation.

    you would use a third person quote, with the following citation.

    look at how it is done by professional journalists.

    That will be the defining method.

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