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I would like to include a figure from a scientific paper which illustrates some background for my invention. I can cite the source and I can make it clear that I'm using it for illustration and discussion purposes only.

Is that a strong case for "fair use" or do I need to be concerned about violating the original author's copyright?

closed as off-topic by Robert Cartaino Jun 1 at 1:38

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "Copyright, Trademark, and Licensing Issues Are Off Topic — Ask Patents is a community-run website to ask about the patent process or to help find Prior Art on US Patents or Applications. Unfortunately, questions about copyright, trademark, and licensing issues are outside the scope of this site. Sorry about the confusion." – Robert Cartaino
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    It is possible you will get a better answer in the Law SE site since this is really about copyright law. – Eric Shain Jun 1 at 1:28
  • I think EricShain is right. Your question is essentially whether your particular use of that material qualifies under one of the Fair Use exceptions of US Copyright law (or whatever country may apply). Fair Use is a very complicated issue and the respondents are going to need a lot more detail about what you using and the context under which you feel it is fair use. But this is better answered by expertise available on our Law site. Good luck! – Robert Cartaino Jun 1 at 1:38
  • The OP is asking about use in a patent application. Is this really off-topic? – Helen Jun 5 at 12:44