- Defining Copyright
- Sources of Copyright Law
- Exceptions – Classroom Use, Works in the Public Domain, and Fair Use
- What Does All This Mean?
- Seeking Copyright Permission
- Copyright Ownership at Monmouth University
- Copyright Committee
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Copyright Definitions
- Seeking Copyright Permission–Sample Letter
Monmouth University’s copyright policy is grounded in the institution’s mission of promoting creativity and intellectual development and the philosophy that copyright law seeks to achieve two interrelated goals: 1) to promote learning, and 2) to protect the rights of copyright holders. In order to promote the development and dispersal of knowledge and the arts, the U.S. Constitution grants a limited monopoly to authors and inventors. These two goals exist in tension with one another: on the one hand, copyright grants finite property rights to copyright holders; on the other, it grants learning rights to others under what is called the “fair use” doctrine. While the U.S. Code grants the copyright holder an “exclusive right” to do such things as reproduce a copyrighted work, the Fair Use section makes that right conditional by granting limited rights to all others to make copies of a work under certain circumstances. The law provides rights to both the creators and the users of copyrighted material, and everyone has an obligation to uphold the law. Therefore, copyright users have an obligation to respect the rights of copyright holders, and holders have a duty to respect the rights of users. As an institution devoted to learning and the creation of knowledge, Monmouth University’s Copyright Policy respects the rights of both stakeholders. This policy understands that the monopoly right extended to copyright holders includes the right to sell or distribute their works and that users of copyrighted material should not damage the available market for that work. At the same time, copyright law clearly encourages the “fair use” of copyrighted materials, especially for education and research. Thus the underlying premise of this policy, explained below, is that a copyrighted work can be used or copied for educational purposes, in many circumstances, provided that the use does not substantially undermine the copyright holder’s rights. In sum, consistent with the institution’s mission as a center for teaching and research, Monmouth University’s copyright policy recognizes the importance not only of respecting the rights of copyright holders, but simultaneously recognizing society’s need to use copyrighted materials to advance learning and discovery.
- The purpose of this policy is to provide guidance to members of the University community with respect to copyrighted works, whether used or created by University members, and to ensure compliance with copyright laws. This policy applies to all University students and employees.
- Note that, except as permitted by law, including under the “Fair Use” guidelines, it is a violation of the law and of University policy for University students or employees to reproduce; prepare derivative works based upon; distribute; or publicly perform, display, or digitally transmit (in the case of sound recordings) a copyrighted work without permission of the copyright owner.
- Webster’s Dictionary defines “copyright” as “the exclusive legal right to reproduce, publish, and sell the matter and form of a literary, musical, or artistic work.” Copyright Law (generally, Title 17 of the U.S. Code) grants the owner of a copyright the
to the following:
- to reproduce the copyrighted work in copies or phonorecords;
- to prepare derivative works based upon the copyrighted work;
- to distribute copies or phonorecords of the copyrighted work to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership, or by rental, lease, or lending;
- in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and motion pictures and other audiovisual works, to perform the copyrighted work publicly;
- in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and pictorial, graphic, or sculptural works, including the individual images of a motion picture or other audiovisual work, to display the copyrighted work publicly; and
- in the case of sound recordings, to perform the copyrighted work publicly by means of a digital audio transmission.
- Copyright protection exists for
original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression, now known or later developed, from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device. Works of authorship include the following:
- literary works;
- musical works, including any accompanying words;
- dramatic works, including any accompanying music;
- pantomimes and choreographic works;
- pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works;
- motion pictures and other audiovisual works;
- sound recordings; and
- architectural works.
- Copyrights exist automatically. The author is not required to register with the Copyright Office. That means that a work may be copyrighted even if the word “copyright” or the © symbol is not present. However, registration with the Copyright Office affords the author certain additional rights (e.g., to institute an action for copyright infringement). To register a work, the author must submit a completed application form, filing fee, and copies of the work to be registered to the
- Generally, key factors with regard to copyright protection are originality and the fixing of a work in a tangible medium. Thus, the following are examples of works to which copyright protection typically does not extend:
- works that lack originality;
- logical, comprehensive compilations (like the phone book);
- unoriginal reprints of public domain works;
- works in the public domain;
- freeware (made available by the author without restriction);
- U.S. government works;
- facts; and
- ideas, processes, methods, and systems described in copyrighted works.
- However, pursuant to copyright law, “in no case does copyright protection for an original work of authorship extend to any idea, procedure, process, system, method of operation, concept, principle, or discovery, regardless of the form in which it is described, explained, illustrated, or embodied in such work.”
- The term of copyright protection varies depending upon a number of factors. As a general rule, for works created on or after January 1, 1978, copyright protection lasts for the life of the author plus 70 years. For additional information on the duration of copyright protection, refer to the resources noted in Appendix C.
The generally cited original source of copyright law in the United States is the United States Constitution (specifically, Article I, Section 8, Clause 8), which permits Congress: “To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors, the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.” In addition to the Copyright Act of 1976 (17 U.S.C. § 101 et seq.), other sources of copyright law include the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 (Pub. L. No. 105-304, 112 Stat. 2860); and the Technology, Education, and Copyright Harmonization Act of 2002 (Pub. L. No. 107-273, 116 Stat. 1910).
The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA)
- The DMCA modified the Copyright Act by, among other things, adding language pertaining to copyright protection and management systems. Section 1201 provides that no person shall manufacture, import, offer to the public, provide, or otherwise traffic in any technology, product, service, device, component, or part thereof, that:
- is primarily designed or produced for the purpose of circumventing a technological measure that effectively controls access to a copyrighted work;
- has only limited commercially significant purpose or use other than to circumvent such a technological measure; or
- is marketed by that person or another acting in concert with that person for use in circumventing such a technological measure.
- Section 512 provides for limits on service provider liability for copyright infringement as a result of the provider transmitting, routing, or providing connections for material if:
- the transmission was initiated by a person other than the service provider;
- the transmission, routing, provision of connections, or storage is carried out through an automatic technical process without selection of the material by the service provider;
- the service provider does not determine the recipients of the material;
- no copy of the material is maintained on the system or network in a manner ordinarily accessible to anyone other than anticipated recipients, and no such copy is maintained on the system or network for a longer period than is reasonably necessary; and
- the material is transmitted through the system or network without modification of its content.
- Section 108 details the reproduction of materials for library and archival use.
- Section 108 (a) states that libraries, archives, and their employees are permitted to reproduce no more than one copy of a work (except as provided in subsections b and c) and distribute it if:
- The copy and distribution is made without direct or indirect commercial advantage.
- The collection is either open to the public or to researchers.
- The reproduction and distribution of the work contains a notice of copyright on the reproduced item or a legend stating that the work may be copyright protected if no such statement appears on the work.
- Sections 108 (b) and (c) state that libraries may make up to three copies or phonorecords of unpublished materials for preservation, security, or deposit in another library if the item reproduced is currently in the collection, digital copies are not distributed digitally and are not made available to the public digitally outside the premises of the library or archives. The same number of copies may be made of published works if the purpose is to replace damaged, lost, stolen, or obsolete materials if the library has made reasonable effort to obtain an unused replacement copy at fair price, and digital copies are not made available to the public in a digital format outside the library.
- Section 108 (a) states that libraries, archives, and their employees are permitted to reproduce no more than one copy of a work (except as provided in subsections b and c) and distribute it if:
The Technology, Education, and Copyright Harmonization (TEACH) Act
- The TEACH Act amended Sections 110 and 112 of the Copyright Act to give non-profit educational institutions expanded rights with regard to use of copyrighted works for distance education (i.e., online instruction). With regard to distance education, Section 110 generally allows for the performance of a nondramatic literary or musical work or reasonable and limited portions of any other work, or display of a work in an amount comparable to that which is typically displayed in the course of a live classroom session, by or in the course of a transmission.
- There are, however, restrictions:
- the work must not have been produced or marketed primarily as an integral part of the live classroom experience;
- the performance or display is made by, at the direction of, or under the actual supervision of an instructor;
- the performance or display is an integral part of a class session offered as a regular part of the systematic mediated instructional activities;
- the performance or display is directly related and of material assistance to the teaching content;
- the transmission is made solely for students officially enrolled in the course;
- reception of the transmission is, to the extent technologically feasible, limited to students officially enrolled in the course;
- technological measures must be applied to reasonably prevent retention of the work by recipients of the transmission for longer than the class session;
- technological measures must be applied to reasonably prevent unauthorized further dissemination of the work;
- portions of works (allowed under Section 110(2)) may be digitized if no digitized version is available or if the digitized version available is subject to technological measures that prevent distance education;
- notice must be given that works, performances, or displays may be protected by copyright.
Classroom Use Section 110 of the Copyright Act allows performance or display of a work by instructors or students in the course of face-to-face teaching activities of a nonprofit educational institution such as Monmouth University. Such performance or display does not require the permission of the copyright owner. However, the copy of the work being performed or displayed must have been lawfully made.
Works in the Public Domain
- Exceptions to the guidelines above (i.e., cases in which copyrighted works can be used without the prior permission of the author) include works that are in the public domain.
- Works in the public domain include works no longer under copyright protection or works that failed to meet the requirements for copyright protection. Works in the public domain may be used freely.
- Works in the public domain generally fall into the following categories:
- works created and published prior to 1923,
- works where the creator has expressly disclaimed a copyright interest, and
- works created by the federal government.
- Fair use entails a
four-factor analysis (i.e., a weighing of four factors on a case-by-case basis). In order to determine if a use of a copyrighted work constitutes fair use, an individual must evaluate the following:
- 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 (e.g., small or large, both quantitatively and qualitatively); and
- the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.
- The following suggest fair use:
- nonprofit or educational use of a copyrighted work;
- the copyrighted work is factual in nature;
- use of a small amount of a copyrighted work (as opposed to the whole work itself or substantial portions) whether fictional or non-fiction; and
- no significant impact on the market for or value of the copyrighted work.
- The following suggest that the permission of the copyright owner may be required:
- commercial use of a copyrighted work,
- use of creative works,
- use of a substantial portion of a copyrighted work, and
- significant impact on the market for or value of the copyrighted work.
- If a work is in the public domain or otherwise not copyright protected, you do not need to seek permission of the copyright owner. Otherwise, you must either:
- seek permission of the copyright owner to use the copyrighted work, or
- make a determination that use of the copyrighted work constitutes fair use.
If the work is not in the public domain, and fair use does not apply, then you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
- If you have any questions or concerns about use of a copyrighted work, please refer to the resources noted in
Appendix C for guidance or contact the Office of the General Counsel.
There are several ways to pursue obtaining copyright permission. Permission may be obtained online through the
Copyright Clearance Center (see Appendix C). You may also seek permission from the copyright owner (see
Appendix D for a sample letter). If you have any questions or concerns about obtaining copyright permission, contact the Office of the General Counsel.
- Violations of copyright law can result in civil and criminal penalties for copyright infringers. Civil penalties can be found at 17 U.S.C. §§ 504-505, 1203. Section 504 allows the copyright owner actual damages (including profits gained by the infringer) or statutory damages (ranging from $200 to $150,000) with respect to any one work. Section 505 allows for costs and attorneys’ fees. Section 1203, likewise, allows for actual damages (including profits gained by the violator) or statutory damages (ranging from $200 to $25,000 per violation).
- Criminal penalties, which apply when an individual willfully infringes a copyright or acts with fraudulent intent, can be found at 17 U.S.C. §§ 506, 1204 and 18 U.S.C. § 2319, among others. Section 506 allows for fines up to $2,500. Section 1204 allows for fines up to $500,000 and imprisonment up to 5 years for a first offense, and fines up to $1,000,000 and imprisonment up to 10 years for subsequent offenses. Section 2319 allows for fines and imprisonment for up to 5 years (up to 10 years if the offense is a second or subsequent offense).
Faculty, students, and staff at the University may produce materials to which copyright protection applies. The specific agreements over copyright ownership are outlined in the Intellectual Property Policy for Monmouth University. This policy is also attached to the Agreement between Monmouth University and the Faculty Association of Monmouth University as a Letter of Understanding. Employees and students at Monmouth University who produce creative work, intellectual and/or scientific work should, whether these works are published or not, familiarize themselves with the Intellectual Property Policy.
NOTE: The Intellectual Property Policy for Monmouth University referenced above is currently being finalized by a working group representing FAMCO and the University Administration. Once that policy is finally approved, the above section shall be automatically included in this Copyright and Fair Use Policy but shall not be included until such time.
The University’s Copyright Committee, appointed by the Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs, consists of a cross-section of faculty, administrators, librarians, and a graduate student. The responsibilities of the Committee include but are not limited to the following:
- assess the sufficiency of current policies and procedures with regard to copyright issues,
- assist with the design and implementation of University policies and procedures with regard to copyright issues, and
- assist in identifying and addressing University needs related to compliance with copyright policies and procedures.
- Do U.S. copyright laws apply to all students and employees of Monmouth University?
- Where can I find copyright information?
In addition to the University’s policy, information on copyright can be found at a number of college and university websites (see Appendix C) and at Title 17 of the U.S. Code.
- How do I copyright protect my own work?
Copyrights exist automatically. Therefore, other than fix your work in a tangible medium, you do not need to do anything to have copyright ownership for your work. However, registration with the
Copyright Office affords additional rights (e.g., to institute an action for copyright infringement). To register a work, you must submit a completed application form, filing fee, and copies of the work to be registered to the
- Can I put a copyright notice on my work?
Yes. Putting a copyright notice on your work would alert others of your rights as the owner of the work. Generally, a copyright notice shall consist of the following three elements:
- the symbol © (the letter C in a circle), or the word “Copyright,” or the abbreviation “Copr.”; and
- the year of first publication of the work; and
- the name of the copyright owner.
How long does copyright protection last?
As a general rule, for works created on or after January 1, 1978, copyright protection lasts for the life of the author plus 70 years. For additional information on the duration of copyright protection, refer to the resources noted in Appendix C.
- How do I get permission to use a copyrighted work if it is determined that permission is required?
There are several ways to pursue obtaining copyright permission. Permission may be obtained online through the Copyright Clearance Center. (See Appendix C.) You may also seek permission from the copyright owner. (See
Appendix D for a sample letter.) If you have any questions or concerns about obtaining copyright permission, contact the Office of the General Counsel.
- What can I do if my request for permission is denied by the copyright owner?
Contact the Office of the General Counsel. It is possible that further negotiations with the copyright owner may be successful in obtaining permission to use the work. Otherwise, do not use the work, unless you can reasonably justify its use under the fair use four-factor analysis.
- What is fair use?
Fair use is an exception to copyright guidelines and allows use of copyrighted works without permission of the author. In order to determine if use of a copyrighted work constitutes fair use, an individual must engage in a four-factor analysis evaluating the following:
- the purpose and character of the use,
- 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.
- Is every educational or research use of copyrighted material covered by fair use?
No. You must perform the four-factor analysis described above to help determine whether your use constitutes fair use.
- Will Monmouth University defend me if I comply with the fair use guidelines and the University’s copyright policy?
Except as prohibited by law, Monmouth University will indemnify and defend an employee against whom an action, claim, or proceeding is brought or threatened as a result of the employee’s good faith performance of duties on behalf of, or at the direction of, the University. For additional information, refer to the University’s Indemnification and Defense Policy. If you receive any legal notice referring to Monmouth University, notify the Office of the General Counsel immediately at 732-571-3598.
- Can I be held personally liable if Monmouth University is sued for copyright violation?
If the only named defendant is the University, the employee will not be personally legally liable in that copyright action. If the employee is named as a defendant in such an action, the University generally will indemnify and provide a defense for the employee if the employee acted in good faith and in a manner he or she reasonably believed to be in, or not opposed to, the best interests of the University. For additional information, see the University’s Indemnification and Defense Policy.
- Whom can I contact if I have additional questions about the University’s copyright policy?
If you have additional questions or would like additional information, feel free to contact the University’s Office of the General Counsel at 732-571-3598.
Except as noted elsewhere in the law, the following copyright terms and meanings apply: An
anonymous work is a work on the copies or phonorecords of which no natural person is identified as author. An
architectural work is the design of a building as embodied in any tangible medium of expression, including a building, architectural plans, or drawings. The work includes the overall form as well as the arrangement and composition of spaces and elements in the design, but does not include individual standard features.
Audiovisual works are works that consist of a series of related images which are intrinsically intended to be shown by the use of machines or devices, such as projectors, viewers, or electronic equipment, together with accompanying sounds, if any, regardless of the nature of the material objects, such as films or tapes, in which the works are embodied. The best edition of a work is the edition, published in the United States at any time before the date of deposit, that the Library of Congress determines to be most suitable for its purposes. A collective work is a work, such as a periodical issue, anthology, or encyclopedia, in which a number of contributions, constituting separate and independent works in themselves, are assembled into a collective whole. A compilation is a work formed by the collection and assembling of preexisting materials or of data that are selected, coordinated, or arranged in such a way that the resulting work as a whole constitutes an original work of authorship. The term “compilation” includes collective works. A computer program is a set of statements or instructions to be used directly or indirectly in a computer in order to bring about a certain result.
Copies are material objects, other than phonorecords, in which a work is fixed by any method now known or later developed, and from which the work can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device. The term “copies” includes the material object, other than a phonorecord, in which the work is first fixed.
Copyright owner, with respect to any one of the exclusive rights comprised in a copyright, refers to the owner of that particular right. A work is created when it is fixed in a copy or phonorecord for the first time; where a work is prepared over a period of time, the portion of it that has been fixed at any particular time constitutes the work as of that time, and where the work has been prepared in different versions, each version constitutes a separate work. A
derivative work is a work based upon one or more preexisting works, such as a translation, musical arrangement, dramatization, fictionalization, motion picture version, sound recording, art reproduction, abridgment, condensation, or any other form in which a work may be recast, transformed, or adapted. A work consisting of editorial revisions, annotations, elaborations, or other modifications which, as a whole, represent an original work of authorship, is a “derivative work”. A digital transmission is a transmission in whole or in part in a digital or other non-analog format. To display a work means to show a copy of it, either directly or by means of a film, slide, television image, or any other device or process or, in the case of a motion picture or other audiovisual work, to show individual images nonsequentially. The term financial gain includes receipt, or expectation of receipt, of anything of value, including the receipt of other copyrighted works. A work is fixed in a tangible medium of expression when its embodiment in a copy or phonorecord, by or under the authority of the author, is sufficiently permanent or stable to permit it to be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated for a period of more than transitory duration. A work consisting of sounds, images, or both, that are being transmitted, is “fixed” for purposes of this title if a fixation of the work is being made simultaneously with its transmission. A joint work is a work prepared by two or more authors with the intention that their contributions be merged into inseparable or interdependent parts of a unitary whole.
Literary works are works, other than audiovisual works, expressed in words, numbers, or other verbal or numerical symbols or indicia, regardless of the nature of the material objects, such as books, periodicals, manuscripts, phonorecords, film, tapes, disks, or cards, in which they are embodied.
Motion pictures are audiovisual works consisting of a series of related images which, when shown in succession, impart an impression of motion, together with accompanying sounds, if any. To perform a work means to recite, render, play, dance, or act it, either directly or by means of any device or process or, in the case of a motion picture or other audiovisual work, to show its images in any sequence or to make the sounds accompanying it audible. A
performing rights society is an association, corporation, or other entity that licenses the public performance of nondramatic musical works on behalf of copyright owners of such works, such as the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI), and SESAC, Inc.
Phonorecords are material objects in which sounds, other than those accompanying a motion picture or other audiovisual work, are fixed by any method now known or later developed, and from which the sounds can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device. The term “phonorecords” includes the material object in which the sounds are first fixed.
Pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works include two-dimensional and three- dimensional works of fine, graphic, and applied art, photographs, prints and art reproductions, maps, globes, charts, diagrams, models, and technical drawings, including architectural plans. Such works shall include works of artistic craftsmanship insofar as their form but not their mechanical or utilitarian aspects are concerned; the design of a useful article, as defined in this section, shall be considered a pictorial, graphic, or sculptural work only if, and only to the extent that, such design incorporates pictorial, graphic, or sculptural features that can be identified separately from, and are capable of existing independently of, the utilitarian aspects of the article. A pseudonymous work is a work on the copies or phonorecords of which the author is identified under a fictitious name.
Publication is the distribution of copies or phonorecords of a work to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership, or by rental, lease, or lending. The offering to distribute copies or phonorecords to a group of persons for purposes of further distribution, public performance, or public display, constitutes publication. A public performance or display of a work does not of itself constitute publication. To perform or display a work publicly means
- to perform or display it at a place open to the public or at any place where a substantial number of persons outside of a normal circle of a family and its social acquaintances is gathered; or
- to transmit or otherwise communicate a performance or display of the work to a place specified by clause (1) or to the public, by means of any device or process, whether the members of the public capable of receiving the performance or display receive it in the same place or in separate places and at the same time or at different times.
Registration, for purposes of sections 205(c)(2), 405, 406, 410(d), 411, 412, and 506(e), means a registration of a claim in the original or the renewed and extended term of copyright.
Sound recordings are works that result from the fixation of a series of musical, spoken, or other sounds, but not including the sounds accompanying a motion picture or other audiovisual work, regardless of the nature of the material objects, such as disks, tapes, or other phonorecords, in which they are embodied. A transfer of copyright ownership is an assignment, mortgage, exclusive license, or any other conveyance, alienation, or hypothecation of a copyright or of any of the exclusive rights comprised in a copyright, whether or not it is limited in time or place of effect, but not including a nonexclusive license. A transmission program is a body of material that, as an aggregate, has been produced for the sole purpose of transmission to the public in sequence and as a unit. To
transmit a performance or display is to communicate it by any device or process whereby images or sounds are received beyond the place from which they are sent. For purposes of section 411, a work is a United States work only if
- in the case of a published work, the work is first published
- in the United States;
- simultaneously in the United States and another treaty party or parties, whose law grants a term of copyright protection that is the same as or longer than the term provided in the United States;
- simultaneously in the United States and a foreign nation that is not a treaty party; or
- in a foreign nation that is not a treaty party, and all of the authors of the work are nationals, domiciliaries, or habitual residents of, or in the case of an audiovisual work legal entities with headquarters in, the United States;
- in the case of an unpublished work, all the authors of the work are nationals, domiciliaries, or habitual residents of the United States, or, in the case of an unpublished audiovisual work, all the authors are legal entities with headquarters in the United States; or
- in the case of a pictorial, graphic, or sculptural work incorporated in a building or structure, the building or structure is located in the United States.
A useful article is an article having an intrinsic utilitarian function that is not merely to portray the appearance of the article or to convey information. An article that is normally a part of a useful article is considered a “useful article.” A work of visual art is
- a painting, drawing, print, or sculpture, existing in a single copy, in a limited edition of 200 copies or fewer that are signed and consecutively numbered by the author, or, in the case of a sculpture, in multiple cast, carved, or fabricated sculptures of 200 or fewer that are consecutively numbered by the author and bear the signature or other identifying mark of the author; or
- a still photographic image produced for exhibition purposes only, existing in a single copy that is signed by the author, or in a limited edition of 200 copies or fewer that are signed and consecutively numbered by the author.
A work of visual art does not include
- poster, map, globe, chart, technical drawing, diagram, model, applied art, motion picture or other audiovisual work, book, magazine, newspaper, periodical, data base, electronic information service, electronic publication, or similar publication;
- merchandising item or advertising, promotional, descriptive, covering, or packaging material or container;
- portion or part of any item described in clause (i) or (ii);
- any work made for hire; or
- any work not subject to copyright protection under this title.
A work of the United States Government is a work prepared by an officer or employee of the United States Government as part of that person’s official duties.
A work made for hire is
- a work prepared by an employee within the scope of his or her employment; or
- a work specially ordered or commissioned for use as a contribution to a collective work, as a part of a motion picture or other audiovisual work, as a translation, as a supplementary work, as a compilation, as an instructional text, as a test, as answer material for a test, or as an atlas, if the parties expressly agree in a written instrument signed by them that the work shall be considered a work made for hire. For the purpose of the foregoing sentence, a “supplementary work” is a work prepared for publication as a secondary adjunct to a work by another author for the purpose of introducing, concluding, illustrating, explaining, revising, commenting upon, or assisting in the use of the other work, such as forewords, afterwords, pictorial illustrations, maps, charts, tables, editorial notes, musical arrangements, answer material for tests, bibliographies, appendixes, and indexes, and an “instructional text” is a literary, pictorial, or graphic work prepared for publication and with the purpose of use in systematic instructional activities.
Copyright Act of 1976 17 U.S.C. § 101 et seq. Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) Pub. L. No. 105-304, 112 Stat. 2860 Fair Use Doctrine 17 U.S.C. § 107 TEACH (Technology, Education, and Copyright Harmonization) Act Pub. L. No. 107-273, 116 Stat. 1910
Colleges and Universities
In addition to the sites listed below, you can find information on copyright and other intellectual property issues by going to the homepage for a specific college or university and searching for “copyright” or “copyright policy.” See, for example: Brown University Copyright and Fair Use Policy
Catholic University Office of the General Counsel: Copyright Policy
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
University of Texas System Office of the General Counsel – Copyright and Fair Use Crash Course
American Library Association
Association of Research Libraries
Copyright Clearance Center
U.S. Copyright Office
(date) (name) (address line1) (address line2)
Re: copyright permission
Dear Mr./Ms. (last name), My name is (your name). I am a professor at Monmouth University, West Long Branch, New Jersey. I will be teaching (course name), a classroom/an online course, during the Spring/Fall 200x term. I have found materials produced by you/your company that are important to this course. I am seeking your permission to copy/post/link to (describe materials in detail) so that I may use the materials with my students.
(If the materials are to be used online, include the following paragraph. Otherwise, delete it.)
The online system used by Monmouth University is password protected and will only be seen by the students in my class. The materials will be removed from the system (date/timeframe). Please advise me if I may use the materials as described above. If additional information is required, please contact me at (phone number) or by e-mail at (e-mail address). Sincerely, .