Sometimes when I am writing a review blog post (or an answer on SE), it is convenient to include a figure from the original paper. Some journals (say PNAS) have policies that explicitly allow non-commercial reproduction of figures:
Anyone may, without requesting permission, use original figures or tables published in PNAS for noncommercial and educational use (i.e., in a review article, in a book that is not for sale) provided that the original source and the applicable copyright notice are cited.
Others, however, seem to explicitly disallow this, of note is the Nature Publishing Group. Today, I had to fill in an online form on RightsLink in order to ensure I could use a figure in my post. I didn't have to pay anything, and the rights were granted instantly after completing the form, but it was still a hassle. The biggest hassle is having to go to each journal's website to check their policies. Hence the questions:
- Is there a general law like fair-use that allows me to place figures from published papers inside blog posts for non-commercial commentary/review purposes?
- What if your blog has ads that generate revenue, is the use of the figures no longer non-commercial? What about SE that generates revenue but not for the poster?
- Is there any extra etiquette one should keep in mind for including figures in blog posts?