Understanding the ins and outs of copyright and fair use is challenging. The best advice is usually to know where to find the information when you need it, which is why we've compiled this guide.
This resource provides some definitions and select highlights of copyright law, an introduction to "fair use,” some examples of adhering to copyright law and exercising fair use, and suggestions about additional resources. This resource does not in any way replace or circumvent applicable copyright law nor does it purport to offer legal advice, or offer an assessment about whether a specific use of copyrighted content constitutes fair use. Every instance of determining copyright and/or determining fair use must be considered distinctly. Any examples are only examples, not recommendations about specific cases or even general categories. Each member of the Taylor University community is responsible individually to abide by copyright law and to exercise discernment and prudence in applying principles of fair use.
A primary intention of this resource is to guide faculty, students, and other members of the Taylor University community in making judicious, responsible fair use of copyrighted content. While there are resources suggested for further discovery about copyright law, the thrust of this guide focuses primarily upon fair use including criteria and tools for assessing fair use, references to best practices (which do not constitute law), and a few hypothetical cases which, again, do not constitute legal advice or models to be replicated without deliberation about fair use regarding specific instances.
The University Librarian and the Director of Academic Technology are available to assist faculty and students with questions about copyright and fair use. Such consultation does not, however, constitute legal advice. The use of copyrighted content, even when judged to be fair use, is the responsibility of the individual who makes use of that content.
Taylor University requires its faculty, staff, and students to comply with all provisions of the Copyright Act of 1976, 17 U.S.C. § 1, et seq. Members of the University community are expected to respect and not to violate the intellectual property rights of third parties. Prior to using any third party materials in their scholarly pursuits, Taylor University encourages its community members to familiarize themselves with the fair use doctrine, codified at 17 U.S.C. § 107. Though unauthorized use of third party material is generally unlawful, this doctrine provides certain limited exceptions in the context of criticism, comment, teaching, scholarship, and research. Members of the University community should responsibly and judiciously consider the applicability of this doctrine prior to making any use of third party materials. Taylor University reminds the University community to always include appropriate attribution when making use of third party materials. The determination that a particular use is of fair use by faculty, student, or University employee, constitutes a decision made by that individual and does not represent a decision made on behalf of the University. Taylor University will provide timely information and education to its members regarding the lawful, responsible, and respectful use of third party copyrighted content.