Question ID: 23401
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Assalamu alaykum respected Mufti.
I would like to inquire about your opinion on copyright on Islamic materials, for example books and recordings of audio lectures. As far as I am aware there is no agreed upon stance on which all Deobandi scholars agree, some like Mufti E. Desai and Mufti M.T. Uthmani seem to be pro-copyright while some like Mawlana A.S. Desai and you seem to be against copyright.
I usually follow Mufti Ebrahim Desai’s fatwas but I would like to know if there is any leeway for me concerning the issue of copyright on Islamic materials? In Europe we find ourselves flooded by cheap or even free booklets distributed by deviant groups like Modernists, fake-Sufis, etc. and I think this should be countered by Sunni Muslims uploading authentic books on Islam and various Islamic issues to the Internet on a massive scale. I do not switch muftis due to nafs or out of personal benefit but due to honestly thinking it to be a viable way to propagate the Ahlu-s-Sunnah.
1) Is it permissible to scan Islamic books and then upload them to the Internet in order to propagate the authentic teachings and correct understanding of Islam? (although local country laws clearly prohibit doing this)
2) On a completely different note; I would like to archive my Islamic books on my computer because I might travel abroad and can’t take all my books along for obvious reasons. Would it be allowed for me to scan the Islamic books I own and then only use them on my personal PC without distributing them on the Internet?
Jazak Allahu khayran.
Wassalam.

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Asked on June 3, 2010 12:00 am
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Private answer
1) Yes
2) Yes
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Answered on June 3, 2010 12:00 am