Privacy/Defamation Questions regarding using fact in Fiction

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  • Hi there! Great site... it's been so hard to find answers by googling! Thank you in advance, this site looks really helpful!

    I have two questions.

    1. Using latitude/longitude lines in a novel, that actually point to a real house in France... Is this breaching laws of privacy? Or because longitude/latitude lines are public knowledge and finding houses via arial maps is public domain as well, is it okay?

    2. Using an organization, like a specific order of monks at a specific real-life monastery, as a group in a book that help some main characters, would this be defamation or would using them trespass privacy laws? Or does it depend upon what they're doing in the book?

    Thanks so very much for all your help!
  • If the house is occupied, for privacy's sake it might be better to change the numbers a bit. Of course, there might be European privacy laws that would come into play.

    Real monastic orders and even houses are used in books all the time. As long as your characters are fictional, that should no more be a problem than writing about, say, a fictional professor at Oxford.

    Both of these questions are not about copyright, though, so if you're really concerned you might want to ask a lawyer or visit a law library and ask the librarian for help.

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