The Copyright Law of the United States of America is designed to protect the copyright holder from unauthorized use of a work. Fortunately, limitations in the law permit the legal, or fair, use of copyrighted materials without permission from the copyright holder, under certain circumstances. These limitations, called the criteria of fair use, help faculty members decide whether they can legally distribute a given material in the classroom or place it on course reserve. For additional information see the Fair Use Checklist box below.
§ 107. Limitations on exclusive rights: Fair use Sec. 107 of the U.S. Copyright Law ensures that copyright does not prevent access to materials for educational purposes by allowing “legal infringements” (as some characterize them) or “the right to infringe” (as most educators phrase it).
Determining the fair use of copyrighted materials is not clear-cut. Faculty members must weigh four factors when considering whether their use of an instructional material constitutes a fair use:
The Fair Use Checklist below will help you make the determination of whether your use falls under the guidelines.
A webinar presented by the Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL). Practical tips for moving course content online and complying with copyright during the cornavirus.
Explication of Copyright and Fair Use During the Pandemic:
If you're uncertain whether using a resource falls under fair use, fill out the form to help you decide and save a copy for your files.In in doing so, you will choose some factors that favor fair use and other factors that oppose it. The final determination of whether your use is "fair" rests on the balance of factors favoring and opposing it. Because you are most familiar with the materials you intend to use, you are the best one to conduct this analysis. Completing the checklist serves two purposes:
It's always nice to find a bargain, and in some cases, there are works you can use for any purpose, including your own personal blog or website, for free! But remember, it's always best to give credit where credit is due: cite the source unless the source specifically states that you don't need to. Here are some examples of free resources:
These are the best rated, free plagiarism detetection sites:
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