SWATTEC : Home Page > For Teachers > Copyright and Fair Use
This page contains information and a number of resources to assist in navigating the complex landscape of copyright and fair use. Of course, the best solution is to simply use Creative Commons licensed content. Just the same, copyrighted content can sometimes be difficult to avoid, so it is important that both students and teachers understand how to exercise good judgement when integrating copyrighted materials in the classroom.
The concept of "fair use" has existed since the founding of our nation through common law, and was recently codified in the Copyright Act of 1976 to protect the rights of individuals to comment, criticize, report, and teach on content that is protected by copyright. The specific fair use text is as follows:
Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 17 U.S.C. § 106 and 17 U.S.C. § 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include:
The so-called "four factors" above make for an excellent framework for decision making with regard to fair use. A wonderfully useful tool for analyzing if use of copyrighted material falls under the doctrine of "fair use" is the Fair Use Checklist from Indiana/Purdue University Copyright Management Center. Using these four factors as headings, you can relatively easily determine if you are within the bounds of fair use when it comes to incorporating copyrighted materials in the classroom.
Of course, the rules of copyright do not end with fair use of video, pictures, and music. Computer software too is protected by copyright and licensing, so it is important to understand how this might apply to your use of a computer in the classroom. Consider Technology & Learning's Copyright and Fair Use Guidelines when attempting to determine whether you are using media or software in the classroom legally. And most importantly, share these rules with your students as they create rich media and content using technology in your classroom.
More great resources:
Fair Use for Media Literacy Education
Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Media Literacy Education
... or, choose the easy way, and go with Creative Commons and other openly licensed content:
One of the best ways to find content that is licensed for reuse is to use Google's advanced search. There you can perform a search by "usage rights", which will return content that has been licensed for the use you require.
jklein, 06/04/10 05:02 (GMT)Add a new page under this one