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With the convenience of technology allowing individuals to transfer, copy, and digitize learning materials faster and easier than ever, understanding copyright law becomes even more important. We have an obligation to practice integrity and trustworthiness. All of us should honor the law when it comes to fair use and copyright and in so doing protect ourselves from legal liability.
On this page you will find:
Copyright grants an author or creator exclusive rights to reproduce, distribute, adapt, perform, or display their protected work. Unless you have the creator’s permission you may not use, copy, or alter the work. A copyright gives the author or creator the right to control all forms of reproduction, including photocopies, slides, and all recordings on cassettes, videotapes, compact disks, and other digital formats.
If a work belongs to the public as a whole it is called public domain and may be used. This includes government documents and works, works with an expired copyright or no existing protection, and works published over 75 years ago. If the copyright owner grants permission or if a legal exception has been made, such as in parody, you may use a copyrighted work. Fair use of copyrighted materials is allowable for educational purposes according to certain restrictions.
Fair Use guidelines are rules (called exemptions) that make it acceptable for students and teachers to use copyrighted material in certain situations. Copyright law provides four standards to determine fair use: purpose of use, nature of the work, proportion/extent of the material used, and effect on marketability. All four standards must be met when copying for educational purposes. These standards are further described in the resources below.
Note: The principal reference for copyright information for Kent schools is the January 2003 edition of "Copyright Condensed" by Heartland Area Education Agency 11. A copy is available in every Kent School District library. Links below are supplemental sites for copyright information.
Five principles to make it easier for students and teachers to understand and use media in projects.