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Copyright Basics A Brief Introduction to Copyright and Fair Use for MTU Graduate Students Nora Allred J. R. Van Pelt/Opie Library.

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Presentation on theme: "Copyright Basics A Brief Introduction to Copyright and Fair Use for MTU Graduate Students Nora Allred J. R. Van Pelt/Opie Library."— Presentation transcript:

1 Copyright Basics A Brief Introduction to Copyright and Fair Use for MTU Graduate Students Nora Allred J. R. Van Pelt/Opie Library

2 Disclaimer This is an informational presentation only and not to be considered legal advice. Author is a librarian who deals with copyright and fair use issues within the library – not a lawyer. The Van Pelt/Opie Library can assist you in locating copyright resources. They cannot provide legal advice.

3 What is Copyright? United States Law granting authors (i.e. creators) certain exclusive rights to their own works for a limited period. Encourages creative expression whether it be artistic or scientific. Allows authors the potential to profit from their work. Permission is required to use copyrighted works.

4 Authors’ Rights Reproduction Distribution Creation of derivative works (adaptations) Performance and display Note: Authors may transfer copyright

5 Works protected under copyright Exist in some tangible form for at least some period of time Are original creations of the author(s) Result from some creative effort on the author’s part

6 What is not protected under Copyright Ideas Facts Inventions (protected through patents)

7 Examples Protected A book about Vikings invading Mars A librarian of the month calendar Table of data presented in a scientific report Not Protected The idea of Vikings invading Mars The dates and holiday information in the calendar The scientific data

8 Copyright Terms Copyright is not eternal Rules for protection can be complicated General rules –Published prior to 1923: public domain –Published before 1978: protected 95 years –Published since 1978: life of author plus 70 years

9 Identifying Copyright Protected Works Notice of Copyright not required for protection. Both published and unpublished works are protected under copyright. Unpublished works created prior to 1978 are entering the public domain.

10 What’s a Researcher to Do? Public Domain works Seek permissions Fair Use

11 What is Fair Use? In certain circumstances, allows for use of copyrighted material without permission from the rights holder. Encourages scholarship, criticism and commentary. Analysis of four factors must be applied on a case-by-case basis. Disputed uses are decided by courts.

12 Four Factor Analysis Purpose or Character of the use Nature of the work used Amount of the work used Effect on the potential market/value of work used Note: Importance of each factor is weighed on a case-by-case basis.

13 Purpose/Character of Use Transformative work? (i.e. creating something new?) Educational or commercial work? Note: Educational use is not always fair use.

14 Nature of Work Used Nonfiction or fiction? Published or unpublished? Consumables (workbooks, e.g.)

15 Amount of Work Used More than a measure of quantity Essence or spirit of the work

16 Effect on Potential Market/Value of Work Used Depriving copyright holder income through competition? Substituting for the original? Note: Does not apply to potential market loss through criticism or parody.

17 Seeking Permission Who holds the copyright? –Not always the author How much is it going to cost? –Some permissions can be expensive How much time? –Finding rights holders, making contact, exchanging funds and letters. Note: Always get permissions in writing

18 Why Bother? Increase in copyright infringement claims against non-commercial entities. UMI can decline to make your dissertation available for sale. Professional integrity is expected in the workplace.

19 Steps to Success Be aware of Copyright Law Carefully apply the Fair Use analysis Seek permissions if your use is not fair Note: Allow time for this process. It is an important part of your thesis or dissertation.

20 Resources MTU Graduate School site on using copyrighted materials in theses and dissertations: When works pass into public domain: Copyright Law and Graduate Research: Stanford University/NOLO site on Copyright and Fair Use JRVP/Opie Library – Ask a Librarian


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