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Writing about Real People? Legal Issues to Consider with Authors Alliance

Thursday, December 7, 2023, 1:00pm - 2:00pm
Online, Open to the public, Event, Presentation,

Register here to join the online webinar on December 7, 2023 at 1pm ET for the launch of Authors Alliance's latest legal guide, "Writing about Real People."

You will learn:

  • More about the guide and what it covers.
  • How you might use it in your work.
  • About plans Authors Alliance has for accompanying materials to be made available soon, such as one-page summaries for quick reference.

More details

Writing about real people can raise a number of complicated legal issues for authors. Laws governing defamation, privacy, and rights of publicity have a number of fact-specific rules,  exceptions, and exceptions to exceptions that can be difficult to navigate without help. Authors Alliance has found that these issues can be an obstacle to creation for all types of authors, from bloggers to narrative nonfiction authors to historians, cultural anthropologists, and other scholarly authors. 

As part of its highly used series of guides on legal issues for authors, Authors Alliance has created a guide to writing about real people for nonfiction authors. This latest guide covers three main legal issues:

  1. false statements and portrayals (e.g., defamation)
  2. invasions of privacy
  3. rights of publicity and identity rights

The guide includes substantial practical guidance, addressing issues such as permission, documenting your research and working with an IRB.

About Authors Alliance

The mission of Authors Alliance is to advance the interests of authors who want to serve the public good by sharing their creations broadly. Authors Alliance creates resources to help authors understand and enjoy their rights and promote policies that make knowledge and culture available and discoverable.



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Event Organizer

Colleen Cressman