DoI need permission to recommend a company’s product in a book?

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DoI need permission to recommend a company’s product in a book?

I would like to write an ebook/book. It’ll teach the readers about the method of using a particular software or promote/recommend a few products and services to the readers which I think they are good in quality. Do I need to gain permission from these companies before writing something about them in my ebook/book? The ebook/book will be my original work (100%). I will not copy from elsewhere. In addition, I am not a distributor or seller of any of these companies. Do I need any permission to include a few pictures of their products and services in my ebook?

Asked on October 12, 2010 under Business Law, Illinois

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you would need the permission of the company to mention their product, to include pictures, to use any trade- or service marks, to pick up any slogans, copy, etc....the problem is, most representations of a company, its product, and its servicies, could be protected intellecutal property. There are trademarks and service marks, as noted above; any images or text could also be copyrighted; the packaging and look of the product could be trade dress; etc. The owner of intellectual property has an almost absolute right to control how that property is used, so naming a product or company (names can be--or be part of--trademark, for example) or representing it in some fashion could transgress that right. Since if you violate someone's intellectual propertly, not only could you have to pay damages, but they could obtain an injunction to stop you selling your book, it's well worth it to secure permission in advance.


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