Originally Posted by KindleKid
Does it equate to concert bootlegs? Essentially if you have a recording you made of a performer and shared it with other publicly, this is legit as long as you do not profit from it. The Grateful Dead were real pioneers of this.
The Grateful Dead specifically allowed free amateur recordings of their concerts to be released. Other bands, not so much. GD realized that they're certainly not losing any money by encouraging fan activity... other bands & companies haven't hit this realization, and "that's a stupid policy" is not a legal defense against copyright infringement.
Although it's questionable whether they've got any right to prevent it--they can demand that attendees not bring recording equipment inside, and potentially sue for breach of contract if they do, but the recorder of an event owns copyright on that recording. However, the writer/CR owner of the song owns control of their works & publication/public performance thereof. (As I understand it, Prince's attorneys are currently going through hassles over YouTube releases of attendee recordings of Prince performing Radiohead's "Creep", a level of copyright tangle that gives me headaches.)
Copying, converting, editing etc. books for personal use--falls under fair use. (In the US. Other countries may be different.)
Releasing those copies: same laws apply as if you photocopied it and handed out the photocopies. Being in print or not doesn't matter.
However, copyright, unlike trademark, is not a "use it or lose it" law--a copyright owner may allow some copies and forbid others. (Which means that one person's permission to distribute ebooks is not transferrable. Finding the book available on a free download site doesn't mean you're allowed to release a new version for different software.)