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Copyright and Fair Use

Guide to Copyright and Fair Use at Wagner College

Fair Use

Fair use is an exception to and limitation of the exclusive rights of copyright holders, which allows members of educational and other institutions to reproduce protected material for educational purposes. Fair use may be determined by the evaluation of four factors relating to the use of the materials.

All four factors should be evaluated in each case, and no one factor can determine the outcome. While fair use applies to teaching, research, and other related activities, an educational purpose alone does not make a use fair. The purpose, character, and sustainability of the use must be evaluated in order to determine the fairness of the use.

In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use, the factors to be considered shall include:

  •     The purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for education
  •     The nature of the copyrighted work (i.e. format)
  •     The amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and
  •     The effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

Please use the Wagner College Fair Use Checklist (PDF) to determine whether or not your materials require permission for use.

Audiovisual Materials

Videocassettes and DVDs owned by the college may be viewed in person or mounted for distributive viewing over a secure server with the following provisions:

  • They must be shown as part of an instructional program
  • They must be shown by members or affiliates of the institution
  • They must be shown either in a classroom or another school venue such as a studio, workshop, library, gymnasium, auditorium or residence hall
  • They must be shown only to students and educators.

Images and Pictures 

Assume that images and pictures are copyright protected.

Music, Music CDs and Sound Recordings

  • Multiple photocopies of printed music may be made for classroom use if they comprise no more than 10% of a whole work.
  • A performable unit (section, movement, aria, etc.) of printed music may be copied for individual use or for a course reserve.
  • Entire non-music cassettes or disks may be copied only if replacement copies cannot be obtained from a commercial source at a fair price. Recording brief excerpts is considered fair use.

Archival Materials and Photographs

Wagner College retains exclusive rights to all institutional photographs and materials as well as monographs, letters, manuscripts and ephemera of the Edwin Markham Archive in Horrmann Library.

Classroom Handouts

The provisions found in Circular 21, Reproduction of Copyrighted Works by Educators and Librarians,  provide guidelines for reproduction of various types of works (i.e. poems, etc.).  Always provide a copyright notice on the first page of copyrighted materials before they are printed.