Sunday, December 18, 2011

Copyright & Fair Use

As students are creating more and more digital media, the question of using other people's material often comes up. There seems to be great confusion or disagreement on this topic. I'm of the belief that the explanation most often given to students is incorrect; that if you took someone else's music, video or images from Internet or YouTube then that's violating copyright law. I think the Fair Use doctrine applies to most student work and should be something they understand and consider.
"You can use copyrighted materials to create something that’s new—something that’s transformed into an entirely different work. transformativeness” is when a work has been changed (using fair use) and value has been added to the original. For example, a parody transforms the original. Be sure to follow fair use and Creative Commons."
Use the criteria listed below to decide if the copying is a fair use. All must be met...
  • Purpose and character of the use (nonprofit, educational, etc.)
  •  Nature of the copyrighted work (factual, creative, published,etc.)
  •  Amount to be copied in relation to the whole
  •  Effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the work
Here is a nice InfoGraphic on Copyright and Fair Use

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