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Copyright, Fair Use and Electronic Reserves for Faculty

Information on fair use guidelines and electronic reserves at Utica College Library.

Copyright and Fair Use

Copyright is applicable to reserve materials. Compliance is the responsibility of the faculty member. 

U.S. copyright law's fair use exemption (section 107) allows use of copyrighted materials without obtaining permission. 

The library uses a four-factor analysis which must be applied to each use to determine if fair use applies for each reserves request:

  • Purpose of Use
  • Nature of the Copyrighted Material
  • Amount Copied
  • Effect on the Market for Original

When it doesn't meet fair use? Faculty members are responsible for obtaining permission from the copyright owner.  

What is the Library's role? Although it is instructor's responsibility to determine fair use and obtain permission, the library will not place items on reserve if the nature, scope, or extent of the materials is beyond reasonable limits of fair use. 

Interlibrary Loan: Materials obtained through interlibrary loan cannot be placed on reserve.

Reserves and Fair Use

1. What can be placed on reserve? 

  • Lawfully obtained copies
    • Owned by faculty, the Library, or another unit of Utica College
    • Public domain documents
    • Class notes, tests, homework, answer keys, or any other material created by the instructor
  • Textbooks
    • Instructors editions can usually be placed on reserve (depending on its copyright)
    • NO review copies
  • Journal Articles
    • One article per issue (fair use guideline, not law)
  • Books
    • Generally 10% of a book with ten chapters or fewer (fair use guideline, not law) 
    • One chapter of a book with more than ten chapters
  • Workbooks
    • Consumable materials cannot be placed on reserve - usually applies to workbooks that are meant to be used once
  • Video Clips
    • The Media Center can digitize video clips for use in teaching and research, viewable in class or streamed online

2. I have an article that I got through interlibrary loan. Can I place that on reserve? 

No.

Physical items obtained through interlibrary loan have various due dates decided on by the lending library. Almost no lending libraries have semester-long due dates. Because of this, placing physical items on course reserve is impractical. 

Digital items obtained through interlibrary loan have different copyright permissions. Because we do not have access to the lenders' licenses, we cannot know if they allow the item to be placed on reserve by another institution.

3. Should I link to a document or make a copy (pdf)? 

Best practice under fair use is to link to a document (usually on a website or in the library databases) whenever possible. 

4.  I have done the fair use analysis and believe I need permission from the copyright owner.  Where do I get copyright permission? 

The Copyright Clearance Center (CCC) at www.copyright.com is the first place to check for permission.  CCC facilitates copyright compliance by providing one-stop-shopping for those seeking permissions to use materials.  

5. How long does it take and what does it cost? 

The short answer is “it depends”.  See the Pay-Per-Use Services brochure at the Copyright Clearance Center for more information on getting permission. 

6. What if I think I’m following fair use and I’m wrong and violate copyright?

It is important to document a good faith effort to conform to copyright law. Although rare, there have been recent cases of academic institutions being sued by copyright owners and publishers for copyright infringement. It is recommended that you document your good faith effort by conducting a fair use analysis and saving the checklist as a record of your effort to conform to the guidelines. 

Electronic Reserves Policy

Item found on library database articles and e-books

  • Provide a permalink (guide to finding permalinks on various databases here) in Engage, Canvas, or other course shell
  • UC credentials are required to view these links (users are prompted to log-in when off-campus)
  • No time limit on how long the permalink can remain in course shell

Item found on website, not library database articles, e-books, handouts, entire websites, etc.

  • Provide URL to item (URL can link directly to the PDF hosted on the original website)
  • No time limit on how long the URL can remain

Item held in the library’s physical collection articles and chapters from books

  • Scan will be made of item
    • Article: include all copyright markings on the article, all pagination, and entirety of references page(s)
    • Book chapter: include copyright page, title page, and any correlating notes or reference pages
  • All scans will have College’s copyright stamp page as the first page of the document
  • Scans for each class are limited to:
    • One article per issue of journal
    • One chapter or 10% of book, whichever is more. This cannot include the “heart” or “primary  concept” of book
  • Scans must be taken down at the end of each course and the file deleted
    • If scan is needed again for another course, it must be re-scanned and the file re-uploaded

Item owned by faculty chapters from books

  • Scan will be made of item
    • include copyright page, title page, and any correlating notes or reference pages
  • All scans will have the copyright stamp page as the first page of the document
  • Scans for each class are limited to:
    • One chapter or 10% of a book, whichever is more, and cannot include the “heart” or “primary  concept” of the book

Item owned by faculty articles

  • Scans for each class are limited to:
    • Physical articles owned by faculty
    • One article per issue of a journal
  • Scans must be taken down at the end of each course and the file deleted
    • If scan is needed again for another course, it will need to be re-scanned and the file re-uploaded