Copyright

Copyright and Fair Use: Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Isn’t all educational use of material (journals, articles, books, book chapters, film, music, art) considered “fair use”?
  2. What is the definition of “fair use”?
  3. How does copyright affect my use of journal articles?
  4. Can I still put articles on Library Reserve at the Circulation Desks?
    1. If the college owns the article in electronic format
    2. If the College owns the article in paper format
    3. If faculty own the article in electronic format (e.g. articles received electronically via ILL)
    4. If faculty own the article in paper format
  5. Can I still put articles into my Moodle class?
    1. If the college owns the article in electronic format
    2. If the College owns the article in paper format
    3. If faculty own the article in electronic format (e.g. articles received   electronically via ILL)
    4. If faculty own the article in paper format
  6. What is a persistent link and how do I create a persistent link?
  7. Can I copy an entire article/journal/book/newsletter and distribute copies to my class?
  8. How does copyright affect my use of book chapters and entire books?
      1. Can I put book chapters on Reserve or into my Moodle class?
        Electronic book chapters
        Paper book chapters for use on Library Reserve
        Paper book chapters for use in Moodle
        Can I put an entire book on Reserve or into my Moodle class?
      2. Electronic books for Moodle
        Paper books for use on Library Reserve
        Paper books for use in Moodle
  9. How does copyright affect my use of DVD’s, videos, music, recordings, audio lectures and other materials? 

    1. Isn’t all educational use of material (journals, articles, books, book chapters, film, music, art) considered “fair use”?
      Answer: No, using materials for educational purposes does not automatically meet criteria for “fair use”, especially since the concept of “fair use” keeps evolving.
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    2. What is the definition of “fair use”?
      Answer: “Fair use” is use of copyrighted material that does not require permission or payment of royalties. In deciding whether or not a particular use of particular material is fair use, the law states that the following four factors should be considered:
      “(1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
      (2) the nature of the copyrighted work;
      (3) the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and
      (4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.” (U.S. Code, Title 17, Section 107) These four factors have generally been balanced evenly, but there have been findings in court which gave precedence to (4).Factor (1) indicates that using a copyrighted work for non-profit, educational use (such as course reserves) is more likely fair use than using it in a profit-making venture. Courts also had more favorable view of a use that either transforms or builds on the original work – such as a parody, rearrangement, analysis, etc. – rather than simply reproduces the original.Factor (2) has been interpreted to mean that using factual, non-fiction material is more likely to be ruled fair use than using creative work, such as fiction, music, or art. The closer to mere facts the work, the more eligible it is for fair use; the more creative the work, the less likely use without permission/fee will be ruled fair.

      Factor (3) means that the less of a copyrighted work you can use the more likely that use is to be ruled fair use, but it also has been ruled that taking even a small amount if it is “the heart” of work is NOT fair use.

      Factor (4) means that a use that will have little or no effect on the market or value of a work will be more likely to been seen as fair use. Just because a work is out-of-print does not mean you can assume your use will not affect the market. This last factor is especially important in considering fair use in e-reserves because of the potential for wide distribution of digital materials.
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    3. How does copyright affect my use of journal articles?
      Answer: The only case when copyright permission is NOT required is when material is in the “public domain” (e.g., information on government websites posted for the public) or when “persistent links” to material are used, possible with electronic format articles owned by the library. Otherwise, if faculty make a paper copy or electronic copy of an article they need to follow fair use guidelines or obtain copyright permission. Faculty themselves will need to obtain copyright permission from publishers when they wish to scan or upload articles into a Moodle class, to place a paper copy of an article on library Course Reserve, or to make paper copies of articles for their students, using:
      a)  Paper or electronic items which they own
      b)  Paper or electronic items which they obtained through Interlibrary Loan
      c)  Paper or electronic items which they obtained through other means
      d)  Paper items which the library owns
      e)  More than 10% of the pages of a printed book
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    4. Can I still put articles on Library Reserve at the Circulation Desks?
      1. If the college owns the article in electronic format:
        Answer: You should not use paper library Course Reserves.  You must create a persistent link in your Moodle class which will take the student directly from your Moodle class to the electronic article on the publisher’s website. Consult instructions for creating persistent links in the Knowledge Base. Additional assistance is available from:
        Library Reserves (Dianne Roosa, Troy Library, [email protected], 244-4546)
        Electronic Resources librarian (Jennifer Anderson, [email protected], 292-1701)
        Sage Online group  (518-292-1730)
        Sage reference librarians (Troy ref desk, 244-2431; Albany ref desk, 292-1945)
    1. If the College owns the article in paper format
      Answer: You may place the article on paper reserve for one semester, and during the semester it is then the faculty member’s responsibility to obtain copyright permission from the publisher for use of the article in subsequent semesters. At the end of each semester the article will be removed from our paper reserves system. Alternatively, you may give students the journal citation and send the students to the stacks to find the hard-cover journal volumes and issues.
    2. If faculty own the article in electronic format (e.g., articles received electronically via ILL)
      Answer: Use of the article and following fair use guidelines are the responsibility of individual faculty members.  Staff cannot make a print out of an electronic article which a faculty member owns.  Staff cannot, therefore, place a paper copy of a faculty-owned electronic article on library reserve.
    3. If faculty own the article in paper format
      Answer: Faculty may place the article on paper reserve for one semester, and during the semester it is then the faculty member’s responsibility to obtain copyright permission from the publisher for use of the article in subsequent semesters.  At the end of each semester the article will be removed from our paper reserves system.
      Back to TOC
  1. Can I still put articles into my Moodle class?
    1. If the college owns the article in electronic format
      Answer: You must create a persistent link in your Moodle class which will take the student directly from your Moodle class to the electronic article on the publisher’s website. Consult instructions for creating persistent links in the Knowledge Base. Additional assistance is available from:
      Library Reserves (Dianne Roosa, Troy Library, [email protected], 244-4546)
      Electronic Resources librarian (Jennifer Anderson, [email protected], 292-1701)
      Sage Online group  (518-292-1730)
      Sage reference librarians (Troy ref desk, 244-2431; Albany ref desk, 292-1945)
    2. If the College owns the article in paper format
      Answer: Appropriate use of the article is the responsibility of individual faculty members. Any duplication of material, whether by posting online or by photocopying, without obtaining copyright permission, may constitute a violation of copyright law and fair use guidelines. College staff will not scan or load material into your Moodle class. Also, the College will not review the content of your Moodle class, since it is on a password-protected system and the contents of Moodle classes are the responsibility of the faculty member who creates the Moodle class.
    3. If faculty own the article in electronic format (e.g. articles received electronically via ILL)
      Answer: Use of the article and following fair use guidelines are the responsibility of individual faculty members.College staff will not scan or load material into your Moodle class. Also, the College will not review the content of your Moodle class, since it is on a password-protected system and the contents of Moodle classes are the responsibility of the faculty member who creates the Moodle class.
    4. If faculty own the article in paper format
      Answer: Appropriate use of the article is the responsibility of individual faculty members. Any duplication of  material, whether by posting online or by photocopying, without obtaining copyright permission, may constitute a violation of copyright law and fair use guidelines. College staff will not scan or load material into your Moodle class. Also, the College will not review the content of your Moodle class, since it is on a password-protected system and the contents of  Moodle classes are the responsibility of the faculty member who creates the Moodle class.
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  2. What is a persistent link and how do I create a persistent link?
    Answer: A persistent link is a connection that passes through campus servers to link users directly to a publisher’s journal or book content. By passing through the campus server, our users are identified as legitimate subscribers to journal or book content and are able to connect to the content. Also, because addresses change on the Internet, it is often desirable to reconfigure the URL of items, such as electronic articles, so that the address used will ALWAYS result in connecting you to the content. A “reconfigured” address is known as a persistent link. Our electronic journal and book publishers allow direct connections to their content via persistent links, but they prohibit all of us from scanning/uploading their content in any other way without copyright permission.
    Consult instructions for creating persistent links in the Knowledge Base.  Additional assistance is available from:
    Library Reserves (Dianne Roosa, Troy Library, [email protected], 244-4546)
    Electronic Resources librarian (Jennifer Anderson, [email protected], 292-1701)
    Sage Online group  (518-292-1730)
    Sage reference librarians (Troy ref desk, 244-2431; Albany ref desk, 292-1945)Back to TOC
  3. Can I copy an entire article/journal/book/newsletter and distribute copies to my class?
    Answer: No. Copyright permission must be obtained for this kind of activity.
    Back to TOC
  4. How does copyright affect my use of book chapters and entire books?
      1. Can I put book chapters on Reserve or into my Moodle class?
        Electronic book chapters
        Paper book chapters for use on Library Reserve
        Paper book chapters for use in Moodle
        Answer: The principles for using book chapters and entire books should follow fair use guidelinesElectronic book chapters available via the library catalog can be listed as citations in Moodle classes.  Students may locate the electronic book chapter in the Sage Library catalog by title or author, and read the content via the catalog. Paper book chapters for use on Library Reserve are accepted if the number of pages being placed on Reserve make up no more than 10% of the entire book from which the chapter was obtained. Chapters containing more than 10% of a book’s pages must be accompanied by copyright permission. Repetitive use of the same book chapter from semester to semester requires copyright permission from the publisher of the material.Paper book chapters for use in Moodle:  Faculty must seek copyright permission before posting book chapters on Moodle unless fair use guidelines are met.
      2. Can I put an entire book on Reserve or into my Moodle class?
        Electronic books for Moodle
        Paper books for use on Library Reserve
        Paper books for use in Moodle

        Answer:
        The principles for using book chapters and entire books should follow fair use guidelines. Electronic books for Moodle which are available via the library catalog can be listed as citations in Moodle classes.  Students may locate the electronic book in the Sage Library catalog by title or author, and read the content via the catalog.

        Paper books for use on Library Reserve:
         Faculty may place books on Library Reserve for a specific semester. At the end of each semester the book will be removed from our Library Reserves system and returned to the library stacks or to the faculty member who owns the book.  Repetitive use of the same book chapter from semester to semester requires copyright permission from the publisher of the book.

        Paper books for use in Moodle:  Faculty must follow fair use guidelines and seek copyright permission before posting entire books on Moodle.

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  5. How does copyright affect my use of DVDs, videos, music, recordings, audio lectures and other materials?
    Answer: Contact Sage Online group for information on these topics (518-292-1730).Back to TOC