Revised Copyright Notice

My thanks to those who commented on my draft of the copyright notice for my book The Structure of M&A Contracts. Here’s my revised version:

© 2010 Kenneth A. Adams

You may copy and distribute without charge this publication’s table of contents, on condition that you include the above copyright notice in any copies.

You may not otherwise copy or distribute any part of this publication without the author’s permission, except as permitted by copyright law. This restriction applies not only to making paper copies for use by others but also to other forms of copying and distribution, including distributing this publication by email or by putting a copy online.

Direct any requests for permission to copy this publication to Kenneth A. Adams at [email address].

Copies of this book can be purchased at [URL] or by calling [phone number].

This represents a big improvement; I’m embarrassed to read the previous version!

Rather than list the various forms of legitimate copying that readers might engage in, I’m banking on those being covered by the carveout for copying permitted by copyright law.

I eliminated the unattractive “finger-wagging,” to use commenter Westmorlandia’s term. But I still say, albeit more gently, that improper copying doesn’t just mean running off photocopies.

I had contemplated saying “Restrictions against unauthorized copying are intended to ensure that authors and publishers are able to continue developing and distributing original works.” But it sounds a bit pious. And anyone who is unaware of the publishing facts of life is presumably not going to be swayed by a copyright notice.

About the author

Ken Adams is the leading authority on how to say clearly whatever you want to say in a contract. He’s author of A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting, and he offers online and in-person training around the world. He’s also chief content officer of LegalSifter, Inc., a company that combines artificial intelligence and expertise to assist with review of contracts.

6 thoughts on “Revised Copyright Notice”

  1. A more fundamental question might be whether a skilled legal drafter might be able to craft a copyright notice that defines a better business model like those promoted by Mike Masnick at Techdirt. He focuses on the use of abundant items (here, easily copied PDF’s) to enhance the profitability of more scarce resources (your time or your linked business) by using the abundance to increase the depth and breadth of connection with your consuming public. This is what you do with your blog. There are a million ways to do this, some just baby steps. For example, why just the Table of Contents? Why not a formula like “up to 200 words in one publication.”.

  2. Ken,

    Following Mark Anderson's comment in the prior post, I see nothing wrong with adding additional positive examples.

    That said, I think the revised copyright notice is a very good example of "addition by subtraction" or "less is more" or, even, "Koncision"(SM).

    All the best,

    Fred Wilf


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