Copyrights and your website

Copyright Law &
Your Websites
Computer Science 201
November 21, 2005
Sarah Garner, J.D., M.L.I.S.
Law Library Director,
Email: [email protected]
AUC & Copyright
AUC is in Egypt, but follows U.S. Copyright
U.S. “works” protected by U.S. Law
AUC students often use works by American
Words, tables, graphs, pictures
What to do?
Abide by U.S. laws!
Copyright & Plagiarism
Avoiding plagiarism requires careful
citation of other’s ideas and words
See AUC’s Academic Integrity Code
Avoiding copyright violations requires:
Using others’ work within legal limits
Applying “Fair Use” test
Origin of U.S. Copyright Law
U.S. Constitution gave Congress the
power to “Promote the Progress of
Science and Useful Arts”
Provides incentive for creativity
Copyright protects AUTHORS
Not Publishers
Not Libraries
U.S. Copyright Law
Creators of “original works of
authorship” receive copyright protection,
which automatically extends to any such
work that is “fixed in any tangible form
of expression”
- 17 U.S.C.§ 102 (a)
Copyright protects:
Published and unpublished creative work, in
any medium in which they are created or
reproduced, in
print or digital form, e.g.
Printed materials,
sound recordings,
video recordings,
visual artworks,
computer software,
web pages, and
multimedia works
Rights of Authors
American authors, or foreign authors
publishing in America, have 5 exclusive
Preparation of derivative work
Display, and
17 U.S.C. §106
Copyright Protection
Authors can give up some of their rights
Creative Commons licenses
Public Domain materials are not protected
Expired copyright
United States Government documents
AUC In Practice
Faculty & Students regularly:
Download information from electronic
Print from a website
Photocopy articles
Use others’ work in their own papers, videos,
websites, etc.
Fair Use Exemption:
17 U.S.C §107
Allows limited use of copyrighted works
without author’s permission
Generally applicable to academic work
(scholarship, teaching & research)
All academic work is not automatically
Requires applying “Fair Use “ Test
“Fair Use” Test
All four criteria must be met:
The purpose and character of the use, including whether
such use is of a commercial nature, or is for nonprofit
educational purposes;
The nature of the copyrighted work;
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
- 17 U.S.C. § 107
How to Apply “Fair Use” Test
You must scrutinize your use of
“expression” of other’s work
Every image, document, sound bite, etc.
Every single time!
Sometimes easy to do
Sometimes hard to do
From UMI
Long Quotations
Reproduced Format
Dialogue from play, screenplay,
broadcast, or novel
Graphics or Pictorial Works
Reproducing CHART, TABLE, GRAPH,
Copies author’s entire work
“Amount” factor weighs against “fair use”
What if using the whole thing is only
meaningful use?
Must relate to research objectives, critical
analysis and not supersede market for original
Internet Sources
Text, graphics, everything is available
on Internet
On web = book
Apply “Fair Use” test
“nature” may be wide use
“effect” of unrestricted access may favor “fair
Practical Tips
You can link to another website without
permission, if is clear that it is not your
Acknowledge source at link
Cite all your sources
date your pages
Ask permission of copyright owner
before putting up any photos or text that
don’t belong to you
Practical Tips
Access to works on the Internet does not
mean you can reproduce them and reuse
them without permission.
Work may have been posted to Internet
without permission
Permission to use work may have been
granted only to particular site
Practical Tips for “Fair Use”
Motion media: up to 10% or 3 minutes (WIL)
Text: up to 10% or 1000 words (WIL)
Music/lyrics/video: up to 10% or 30 seconds (WIL)
Database information: up to 10% or 2500 fields/cell
entries (WIL)
Photos and images
1 creator – up to 5 works
Collection: up to 10% or 15 works (WIL)
One poet – up to 250 words or portions of poems
Multiple poets – 5 poems or portions of poems from an
How to Comply with U.S.
Copyright Law
Apply “Fair Use” Test
Get permission if necessary
Cite properly
For Help: AUC Writing Center
How to Get Permission
Determine copyright owner
Write a letter or email requesting permission
See sample letter at
Trying is not good enough
Copyright owners have no obligations
Can demand royalties
So What? I’m in Egypt!
You must consider repercussions of
copyright violations
Deliberate infringements are
Violating AUC Academic Integrity
Code may prevent receiving degree
Affects professional reputation
Copyright compliance sounds boring and
like a lot of work, but
A violation is theft from an author
Keep the Spirit of the Law in mind
Copyright is intended to:
“promote the Progress of Science and Useful Arts”
Applies to “Fair Use” too!