As an educator, you can use copyrighted materials without getting permission to do so if your use of the material fits under fair use. The fair use clause of copyright permits faculty to make and distribute copies of traditionally copyrighted materials without seeking permission from the copyright holder (i.e., author) in certain situations related to teaching, scholarship, and research.
Educators must consider the following four factors to determine if a copyrighted item fits under fair use:
Only you can determine if your use is fair - not a librarian, not a faculty chair, not a dean, not a lawyer - just you.
Unfortunately there is no magic formula for determining if you can use copyrighted material without getting permission from the copyright holder. So, how do you know what's okay to do? Run your intended use through our Fair Use Checklist!
The purpose of the Fair Use Checklist is to guide, and document, a good faith effort to determine if your use of another’s work fits under fair use. Retain a copy of the completed checklist should a dispute arise.
As you complete the checklist, consider the following:
Then, as a whole, make a decision for or against fair use of the material.
If you reasonably believe that your use of the copyrighted work fits under fair use after completing the Fair Use Checklist, you may:
If you do not believe that your use of the copyrighted work fits under fair use after completing the Fair Use Checklist, you may:
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