"I used 3,872 words of Winston Churchill’s in the book. And that cost me £950, which is roughly 40 cents a word."The UK's fair use laws don't only apply to Churchill's estate; indeed, it is so restrictive, Sergey Brinand Larry Page, the founders of Google, told Rohan Silva, senior policy advisor to British Prime Minister David Cameron, that they probably wouldn't have been able to start Google in the UK because of how its fair use laws would restrict Google search algorithm.
All of this is the topic of the latest Freakonomics podcast ("Who Owns the Words That Come Out of Your Mouth?"), which as always can be heard at the Freakonomics website or downloaded from iTunes. It is hosted by Stephen Dubner and includes conversations with Barry Singer, Rohan Silva, and Dubner's co-author Steven Levitt, who (as most of you know) is an economist at U of Chicago. A brief summary of the podcast can be found here: "Who Owns the Words That Come Out of Your Mouth?"