Can I use someone else’s quotes in my NFT?

Select jurisdiction

  • Germany
  • India
  • Greece
  • France
  • Brazil
  • Austria


This depends on the question if the quote can be considered a literary work according to sec. 2 of the German Copyright Act. For this, the quote itself would need to have a certain level of creativity (comparable to the threshold of originality that is required for copyright protection in Anglo-American-based copyright law systems). The shorter the quote the more likely it is that it can be used. It depends though always on the facts of the case and can´t be answered in general.

Stefan Ellenberg



No, you cannot unless you have their permission or the usage falls under one of the exceptions as a fair dealing with any work. Registration of Copyright is not mandatory under Indian Copyright Act, 1957. And any person knowingly infringing the Copyright of others commits a criminal offense.

Ekta Singh



Under Greek law, no formalities are required for the registration of intellectual
property rights – these are granted by law if the artwork is characterized of
“originality”, as interpreted by case law. If the artwork is original, then copyright law
applies and the author must provide a written licence or transfer of his copyright so
that you can use his work. However, there are some exceptions by law that may allow
use of part of the work in the final work associated with the NFT, but it is
recommended that you avoid using another’s copyrighted work without prior
permission to create a NFT.

Vaia Papathanasiou

Private Law


Yes, as long as the quote responds to the legal criteria. The work must have already been disclosed; the citation must be brief, must indicate the source and the name of the author, and must be justified by the nature of the work into which the citation is incorporated, for example, the work associated with the NFT is scientific, educational, etc.

Casey Joly

Intellectual Property


It is necessary to check if there is, for example, a brand citation in the sentence. In addition, in relation to other cases, article 46 of the Copyright Law establishes the use of small excerpts of preexisting works, in item VIII, and reports that the main objective of the new work cannot harm the exploitation of the reproduced work and cannot cause unjustified injury to the legitimate interests of the authors.

Fabio Cendão

Intellectual Property and Innovation


The Austrian Copyright Act establishes protection for several kinds of works including works of
literature. While single words are likely not subject to copyright protection, it needs to be assessed
on a case-by-case basis if a sequence of words (e.g. a quote) is subject to copyright.
The legal consequences that can be drawn from this are largely the same as for the use of other
people's artworks (see 1.3.2 above), the major difference being that from a technical point of view
the quote can be much more easily incorporated directly into the NFT by the means of including it
directly in its metadata. Thus, according to a view in Austrian legal literature minting could be
considered as an exploitation under copyright law. Thus, uploading a quote via the NFT’s metadata or
to an online-storage and making it available via a NFT could likely be considered as an exploitation. In
any case, a legal qualification would only be possible on a case-by-case assessment. Thus, one would
be advised to secure the relevant copyrights to someone else's copyrighted work before creating a
NFT. It also needs to be considered that someone else's quote can be additionally protected under
e.g. trademark law or competition law.

Alexander Glaser

Digital Law

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