Faculty have an obligation to practice high copyright standards. Refer to the Faculty Handbook to see the University's policy on adhering to copyright legislation. In addition to the guidelines in the Reproduction of Copyrighted Works by Educators and Librarians (PDF) referenced in the handbook, there are many resources available on the internet to help you understand copyright law.
The information provided by the library should not be taken as legal advice, but we can provide some best practices for incorporating materials into your Canvas course sites.
It is always best practice to link to a legitimate online copy of the work instead of posting a copy of the work in Canvas. For instance, it is permissible to link to many of the electronic resources licensed though the library, including journal articles, eBooks, or streaming video. See "Finding Permalinks" under the Off-Campus Access section of this guide.
If you have specific questions about providing certain types of content, or would like help finding resources in the library, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
If linking is not possible, instructional materials may be posted to Canvas under any of the following circumstances:
COPYRIGHT/FAIR USE GUIDELINES
Under the Copyright Act, copyright owners have the exclusive right to reproduce, distribute, perform, display, and prepare derivative works of their creations. If another person desires to reproduce or use a copyrighted work, that person must either seek permission from the copyright owner or fall within the Copyright Act’s “fair use” exemption. “Fair use” is a defense to copyright infringement that allows one to use a copyrighted work under certain conditions without the permission of the copyright owner, as discussed in more detail throughout this document.
If you have any questions about whether a particular use constitutes “fair use,” please contact your Department chair or academic Dean.
FAIR USE FACTORS
There are no bright line rules or tests with the fair use doctrine. To determine whether a use is “fair use,” courts weigh the four factors outlined below. Following each factor are some considerations that, if true in a particular situation, are suggestive of fair use as it relates to that factor. Keep in mind that each of the four factors must be considered; no single factor is dispositive when determining whether a particular use is appropriate.
1) The purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes.
- Materials are provided only for the purpose of serving the educational needs of the course and only for one course
- Students are not charged a fee for the course materials, nor does the University benefit monetarily from the use of the materials.
2) The nature of the copyrighted work.
- The selected work is directly relevant to the learning objectives for the course
- Careful consideration was taken with regards to “consumable” materials that are meant to be used and repurchased
3) The amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole.
- Amount of materials provided are limited, consisting of less than 10% of the total work
- The amount of work provided is directly related to the learning objectives in the course
4) The effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.
- Materials provided include a citation to the original source of publication and a form of copyright notice when applicable
- Materials are made available exclusively for students enrolled in the course and for educational purposes only within the course; students may not distribute the materials beyond the limits of the course
- Access to materials is limited by password to deter unauthorized access beyond the use of the course
- Materials provided include works that the instructor, the library, or University has lawfully obtained a copy
- Materials are not provided that are reasonably available and affordable for students to purchase
The Fair Use Checklist and variations on it have been widely used for many years to help educators, librarians, lawyers, and many other users of copyrighted works determine whether their activities are within the limits of fair use under U.S. copyright law (Section 107 of the U.S. Copyright Act). The four factors form the structure of this checklist. Congress and courts have offered some insight into the specific meaning of the factors, and those interpretations are reflected in the details of this form.
BENEFITS OF USING THE CHECKLIST
A proper use of this checklist should serve two purposes. First, it should help you to focus on factual circumstances that are important in your evaluation of fair use. The meaning and scope of fair use depends on the particular facts of a given situation, and changing one or more facts may alter the analysis. Second, the checklist can provide an important mechanism to document your decision-making process. Maintaining a record of your fair use analysis can be critical for establishing good faith; consider adding to the checklist the current date and notes about your project. Keep completed checklists on file for future reference.
THE CHECKLIST AS A ROAD MAP
As you use the checklist and apply it to your situations, you are likely to check more than one box in each column and even check boxes across columns. Some checked boxes will favor fair use and others may oppose fair use. A key issue is whether you are acting reasonably in checking any given box, with the ultimate question being whether the cumulative weight of the factors favors or turns you away from fair use. This is not an exercise in simply checking and counting boxes. Instead, you need to consider the relative persuasive strength of the circumstances and if the overall conditions lean most convincingly for or against fair use. Because you are most familiar with your project, you are probably best positioned to evaluate the facts and make the decision.
This checklist is provided as a tool to assist you when undertaking a fair use analysis. The four factors listed in the Copyright Statute are only guidelines for making a determination as to whether a use is fair. Each factor should be given careful consideration in analyzing any specific use. There is no magic formula; an arithmetic approach to the application of the four factors should not be used. Depending on the specific facts of a case, it is possible that even if three of the factors would tend to favor a fair use finding, the fourth factor may be the most important one in that particular case, leading to a conclusion that the use may not be considered fair.
The Checklist and this introduction is licensed by a Creative Commons Attribution License with attribution to the original creators of the checklist Kenneth D. Crews (formerly of Columbia University) and Dwayne K. Buttler (University of Louisville).
The Copyright Act also contains provisions allowing the use of certain copyrighted works in distance education settings, such as courses offered via internet or closed-circuit television. However, these provisions impose requirements that are much more rigorous than the requirements imposed in face-to-face classroom settings. In order for the transmission of a copyrighted work in a distance education setting to comply with the law, educators must consider the following guidelines:
The transmission of the copyrighted work must be limited to “students officially enrolled in the course for which the transmission is made” to the extent “technologically feasible”
In the case of digital transmissions:
The work being transmitted may be any of the following:
The work being transmitted may not be any of the following:
A work may be converted from print or analog form to digital form (limited to the amount that may be performed or displayed as set forth above) only if:
Fair Use Analysis Still Applicable: Even if the particular use of a copyrighted work does not meet the above-mentioned requirements, it may still be allowable if it qualifies under the fair use analysis described previously.
The Technology, Education and Copyright Harmonization Act (TEACH Act) of 2002 (see 17 U.S.C. § 110(2)) modified the Copyright Act to allow for the use of copyrighted works of third parties in distance learning activities conducted over internet. The TEACH Act allows educators at accredited, non-profit educational institutions to copy and transmit copyrighted works over distance learning networks without the permission of the copyright owner or the payment of royalties provided certain conditions are met. In order to take advantage of the TEACH Act, the following factors must be met:
All material displayed under the TEACH Act must contain the following notice:
The materials on this course website are only for the use of students enrolled in this course for purposes associated with this course and may not be retained or further disseminated. The materials on this course website may be protected by copyright, and any further use of this material may be in violation of federal copyright law.
The TEACH Act does not permit the following: