What does “copyright” mean?<br />Copyright refers to the rights an author of a original expression are granted, by law, for protection of their work. <br />The moment a tangible work is produced, the author is immediately granted these rights, without having to register or display the copyright symbol. In other words, from the moment something is written down or published on a computer, it automatically becomes copyrighted.<br />
History of Copyright Laws<br />Copyright laws have been in effect since the 1790s.<br />As our country progress academically and technologically, copyright laws continue to be updated. The most recent update was done in 2002 and is known as the TEACH Act.<br />
Implications of Copyright Law <br />Under the copyright law, the owner is given the following rights:<br />The right to reproduce their work.<br />The right to distribute their work.<br />The right to prepare derivative works based on an original work.<br />The right to perform or display the copyrighted work publicly.<br />
Implications of Copyright Law (con’t)<br />Violation of Copyright Law could lead to the following:<br />Attorney and court fees for yourself, as well as, the plaintiff<br />Liability damages ranging from $30,000 - $150,000<br />Prison sentence<br />
Copyright and Education <br />Educators are required to following copyright law, as set forth in Title 17 of the United States Code.<br />A limitation to copyright law, referred to as “fair use” allows copyrighted works to be used for criticism and commentary, parody, news reporting, research and scholarship, and classroom instruction.<br />Many educators misconstrue “fair use”, believing that any copyrighted material can be used as long as it if for instructional purposes, which is not the case.<br />
Fair Use<br />To determine whether or not use is “fair”, requires careful consideration of the following factors:<br />the purpose and character of the use<br />the nature of the copyrighted work.<br />the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole<br />the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work<br />Under most circumstances, educators can use the following guidelines to determine whether usage constitutes as “fair”:<br />Copying a single chapter from a book<br />Copying an excerpt from a work that combines language and illustrations, such as a children's book, not exceeding two pages or 10 percent of the work, whichever is less<br />Copying a poem of 250 words or less or up to 250 words of a longer poem<br />Copying an article, short story, or essay of 2,500 words or less, or excerpts of up to 1,000 words or 10 percent of a longer work, whichever is less; or<br />Copying a single chart, graph, diagram, drawing, cartoon, or picture from a book, periodical, or newspaper.<br />
TEACH Act<br />In addition to fair use, educators have been granted a separate set of rights under the Technology, Education and Copyright Harmonization Act of 2002 (TEACH).<br />The TEACH Act clarifies the use of copyrighted works for the purpose of distance learning. It also summarizes the responsibility university staff and students must stand by in order to be in compliance. <br />
Obtaining Rights to Utilize Copyrighted Works<br />Before using a work that is copyrighted, does not constitute as fair use, and/or is protected under the TEACH Act, permission must be granted.<br />There are numerous avenues an educator can take to get permission for using copyrighted materials, including contacting the owner and requesting written permission or contacting the CCC (Copyright Clearance Center).<br />
So, as Educator what are we left with?<br />As technology continues to influence education, educators are no longer able to “get away” with infringing on copyright law. <br />Educators must educate themselves regarding the copyright law and carefully adhere to its requirements.<br />When an educator fails to abide by copyright law, districts can be held liable. <br />
Something to Consider!<br />According to their web-site, Creative Commons licenses provide a flexible range of protections and freedoms for authors, artists, and educators.Their goal is to maximize digital creativity, sharing, and innovation. <br />If you are going to create and share your work, consider using a license from this site. Placing such a license on your work, will aid readers in understanding what can legally be done with your work.<br />http://creativecommons.org/<br />
Work Cited<br />Harper k. George, Copyright Crash Course, University of Texas Libraries, 2001, 2007, http://copyright.lib.utexas.edu/useofweb.html<br />Jassin, Llyod J (1998-2011). Fair Use in a Nut Shell. Retrieved from http://www.copylaw.com/new_articles/fairuse.html.<br />Starr, Linda (2010). Copyrights and Copying Wrongs. Retrieved from http://www.educationworld.com/a_curr/curr280a.shtml.<br />Steven, Daniel (2001). Understanding Copyright. Retrieved from http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/10/.<br />
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