Sparks Fly
[Home] [PBS VideoDatabase] [Social Studies] [TSU] [UVA]


Copyright and Education

What is it?

In the United States, anything you create, such as pictures, text, audio files, multimedia, and so on is automatically protected as soon as you write (print) or save it to electronic media (disks, servers, CDs, and so on).

Copyright is the:

Exclusive right to intellectual property

Granted to authors for a limited time

Exclusively federal law in U.S.

Copyright clause of the Constitution

Article 1, Section 8, Clause 8

Congress has the power to "promote science and the useful arts by securing for limited times to authors…the exclusive right to their…writings."

What does it do?

Protects only an author’s original expression

Does not extend to any ideas expressed in the book

Does not cover any pre-existing material incorporated into the work

Copyright and Fair Use

Copyright--rights to sale, display, use of a work

Fair Use--special exemptions to copyright law

Exclusive Rights of Author

Every author has five exclusive rights protected by copyright law

Reproduction of work

Derivative work

Distribution of work (1st sale)

Performance of work publicly

Display of work publicly

Fair Use

Allows use of portions of work




news reporting




Factors of Fair Use

Purpose--whether the use is of a commercial nature or is for a nonprofit-educational purpose.

Nature of work--schools usually copy works that are informational.

Amount used to total work--the greater the portion of the work copied the less likely it falls under "fair use."

Effect on potential market value of work--if you prevent profit, then it is not "fair use" *********

Multi-media Fair Use Guidelines

Agreement between higher education and performance media (CCUMC Multi-Media Guidelines)


Details three areas

permitted use for students

permitted use for educators

peer conference permitted use

Fair Use

Section 110

Educators have the right to public performance and display for face to face instruction

Capture for instruction over time

permission required

Permitted Use--Students

Produce for a specific course (computer generated product with presentation controlled by computer)

Perform/display in course created

Use in portfolio (academic work, position applications, graduate school interviews)

Permitted Use--Educators

Instruction in multi-media development

Curriculum based instruction

face to face activity

self-directed activity

remote instruction on a secure network (NOT Internet)

Peer Conferences

Workshops and conferences

Professional portfolio

Time Limitations

Student--only during class but can be retained for portfolio

Educator--only for teaching activity (maximum of 2 years) no limit for retention in portfolio

Limitations of Source

Motion Media

10% or 3 minutes (whichever is less)


10% or 1000 words (whichever is less)


250 words or less or entire poem

no more than 3 poems per poet

no more than 5 poems per Anthology

Limitations of Source

Numerical Data Sets

up to 10% or 2500 fields or cells (whichever is less)

Illustrations, Photographs--10% or 15 images (whichever is less)

No more than 5 images for a single artist/photographer

Copying and Distribution Limits

No more than 2 use copies

One of which may be placed on reserve

One preservation copy

Used to generate replacement if one of 2 original copies fail

Permission Required
Guidelines Do Not Apply

Producing for commercial (sale) use

Replicating beyond copy limits

Distributing copies to others

Producing for use beyond your educational institution

Transmitting over electronic networks

Contemplating a future use that results in wider distribution


Download from the Internet

treat all as copyright unless noted

World Intellectual Property Treaty 1998

Digital Millennium Act

Provide credit and copyright notice information


Reproduction of computer programs

limited by license/contract law

Notice of user restrictions

alterations, MUST note

Web Addresses

Information in detail

Internet Guidelines

Assume copyright

Follow fair use

Properly cite resources

Request permission when in doubt or if use extends beyond classroom

Internet Guidelines

Notify webmaster (owner of site) if intent to "whack"

List site and statement of reason for need to whack

Request permission if use beyond research or classroom presentation


No direct problem in law unless you don’t give credit

Must link to home page

Do no link to further levels of web page

Not yet litigated

Web presence implies desire to link


Protects intellectual property

Guarantees exclusive rights to the author

Protects rights of owners, inventors, etc.

Protects economic interests


Chang,, "Intellectual Property in the Information Age"

"Bleeding Edge: Software Issues"

"Bleeding Edge: Fair Use"

"Bleeding Edge: Web Issues"

Library Association

Classroom Connect


Return to Presentations Handout


This page was updated on:  04/10/02