A provision for fair use is found in the Copyright Act at Section 107. Under the fair use provision, a reproduction of someone else's copyright-protected work is likely to be considered fair if it is used for one of the following purposes: criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. If the reproduction is for one of these purposes, a determination as to whether the reproduction is fair use must be made based upon four factors:
Fair use is an ambiguous concept and the law does not state exactly what uses of a copyrighted work will be considered fair use under the law and may therefore be used without obtaining permission. As such, individuals who are not lawyers may often need to be interpreters of the law in everyday circumstances, and answers as to how much reproduction may be considered fair use often remain unclear. The bottom line is that fair use requires a very circumstance-specific analysis as to whether a particular use or reuse of a work may indeed be considered fair use.
To avoid confusion and minimize the risk of copyright infringement, Delgado Libraries interpret the following situations as fair use:
If your use does not meet the above criteria and the work is protected by copyright, you probably need to obtain permission to use the work from the copyright holder or its agent. Please see the Delgado Libraries Copyright Web Page, http://dcc.libguides.com/dcc_copyright, for more information and tools to help determine compliance.
Based on Delgado's fair use analysis, classroom handouts fall into two categories: one that requires permission and one that does not. If the handout is a new work for which you could not reasonably be expected to obtain permission in a timely manner and the decision to use the work was spontaneous, you may use that work without obtaining permission. However, if the handout is planned in advance, repeated from semester to semester, or involves works that have existed long enough that one could reasonably be expected to obtain copyright permission in advance, you must obtain copyright permission to use the work.
If the Delgado Libraries own a copy of a publication, the library may place that copy on reserve without obtaining copyright permission. If the library wishes to reproduce additional copies of a work and place them on reserve for students to review, in either paper or electronic format, the library must obtain copyright permission.
It is permissible to photocopy copyright-protected works in the Delgado Libraries without obtaining permission from the copyright owner, under the following circumstances:
Delgado Libraries may make reproductions for library users (students, faculty, etc.), provided the following criteria are met:
Photocopying by students is subject to a fair use analysis as well. A single photocopy of a portion of a copyright-protected work, such as a copy of an article from a scientific journal made for research, may be made without permission. Photocopying all the assignments from a book recommended for purchase by the instructor, making multiple copies of articles or book chapters for distribution to classmates, or copying material from consumable workbooks, all require permission.
It is important to maintain a distinction between ILL and Document Delivery Services (DDS). Photocopying for DDS requires copyright permission.
The Delgado Libraries may participate in interlibrary loans without obtaining permission provided that the "aggregate quantities" of articles or items received by the patron do not substitute for a periodical subscription or purchase of a work. Delgado Libraries follow the CONTU (National Commission on New Technological Uses of Copyright Works) guidelines for defining "aggregate quantities." The CONTU guidelines state that requesting and receiving more than five articles from a single periodical within a calendar year or a total of six or more copies of articles published within five years prior to the date of request would be too many under CONTU.
If the articles or items being copied have been obtained through a digital license, you must check the license to see under what terms and conditions, if any, interlibrary loan is permitted.
In 2002, the Technology, Education and Copyright Harmonization (TEACH) Act became law and expanded the latitude colleges and universities, including Delgado Community College, to have for the performance and display of copyright-protected materials in a distance education environment, including through the use of Course Management Systems (CMS), Blackboard. The copyright requirements for TEACH and CMS postings are similar to those of classroom handouts, but extend the traditional rules for those handouts to the digital transmission of materials to distance education students. If the use is spontaneous and will not be repeated, copyright permission is not required; however, the content may not remain posted for extended periods of time. If the use is planned, repeated or involves works that have existed long enough that one could reasonably expect to receive a response to a request for copyright permission, you must obtain copyright permission.