The system of book creation: intellectual property and the self-publishing sector of the creative industries

R. Matulionyte, E. Paton, P. McIntyre, D. Gleadhill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


This article explores publishing as a creative system and examines the changes brought by the emergence of digital technologies on this sector of the creative industries, specifically the proliferation of self-publishing. The paper examines the deep background of changes in thinking on creativity as well as the evolution of self-publishing, before focusing in on the specific legal challenges that self-publishing authors face. These challenges include questions surrounding collaboration and community-sourced services and the identification of co-authors who would also have legal rights invested in the final product as well as issues surrounding fan-fiction, which is especially popular among self-publishing authors. Linked to these are the challenges surrounding the protection of works published online, which is especially difficult for self-published authors who often work without the legal knowledge, experience and resources that traditional publishers have previously provided to enforce copyright. These and other issues raise the question as to the extent the current legal structure of copyright corresponds to the new realities facing the publishing sector and whether this underpinning legal framework satisfactorily serves this creative system in action.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-210
Number of pages20
JournalCreative Industries Journal
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • creative systems
  • publishing sector
  • e-books
  • fan-fiction
  • self-publishing
  • intellectual property
  • copyright
  • legal issues


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