How to avoid copyright infringement when quoting/sourcing a reference work?

2017-05-18 21:31:48

If I was engaging in a for-profit activity (writing a book that will be sold or starting a monetized blog, for example) that required the use of many scientific facts, how would I go about collecting that information in a way so as to avoid a copyright issue?

To illustrate, suppose I was starting a blog on jewelry making and I needed to add informative descriptions on the various types of precious metals/gems a novice jeweler can use (like the various types of topaz that exist and their properties, etc). Where would I obtain such information without infringing on a copyright? From the little I know about U.S. copyright law, I can't just copy information straight from an encyclopedia and then place my resultant work for sale. Wikipedia IS open, but requires anyone using it to make their work open as well, if I'm correct.

Are there any free and open sources I can quote without having to make my content be under an open license (perhaps like from a college or the governme