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COPYRIGHT FAQs

  
What are the classroom guidelines for fair use?
 
The Fair Use Guidelines contain several provisions that allow faculty members and libraries to place items on reserve without worry so long as these provisions are followed in good faith. An example of an area of the fair use guidelines is limiting photocopies taken from a book to only 10% of the book. When materials are included as a matter of fair use, electronic reserve systems should constitute an ad hoc or supplemental source of information for students, beyond a textbook or other materials.
 
The guidelines also offer several provisions that are a benefit to faculty members and libraries. One of these provisions allow faculty members to temporarily place photocopies of book chapters on reserve in the event that a book which has been ordered for the library to place on reserve, or for students to purchase in the book store, has not arrived in time for students to access.
 
Why does the PCOM Library follow these guidelines?
 
We follow these guidelines to protect the institution, you, and ourselves from the possibility of legal action from copyright owners. We are all subject to being held personally liable in the event of a legal suit if we have not followed the given law and fair use guidelines.
 
What are our reserve policies regarding copyright?
 
According to the Fair Use Guidelines, items placed on reserve should be used as a supplement to a class and not as the primary text. We try our best to abide by these guidelines while also trying to assist faculty members in making materials available to students.
 
Suggestions for getting started?
 
The PCOM Library suggests that all faculty members who plan to use copyrighted material check the PCOM Journal Search Database and PCOM catalog to see if the item is available either electronically or in book format. If the item is available electronically, faculty members are encouraged to provide students with the URL so that they can link directly to the item and avoid copyright issues. Books owned by the library may be placed on Reserve without copyright consideration.
 
Whose responsibility is it to obtain copyright permission?
 
Obtaining copyright permission is the faculty member's responsibility.
 
How do I obtain copyright permission for items?
 
In most cases, the page in a journal or book containing the copyright notice will also contain information such as the publisher's name, location, publication year, and in many cases, an address. There are several resources available to find publishers addresses.
 
The Electronic Reserves permissions process is entirely separate from paper copies. When you ask for permission to place an item on electronic reserve, the Copyright Clearance Center (CCC) contacts the rights holder. You may receive notification in one to four weeks. The cost to mount an item electronically is figured by multiplying the royalty by the number of students in the class. The royalty could be as much as $60 or more for each item. A fee of $2.50 is assessed for all requests regardless of whether or not permission is granted.
 
You can view these resources at the Copyright Clearance Center (CCC) http://www.copyright.com/.
 
What type of copyright permissions should faculty members obtain?
 
When asking for copyright permission, explain that the publication(s) will be used for course reserves, print or electronic format, and ask for use of the item for the longest time period possible. For instance, if you teach a course once a year and plan on using this article each time then ask for the maximum number of years they will allow. Since obtaining copyright permissions may take a while, it is best to begin this process a term in advance when possible. Any costs incurred in situations where the faculty member must request copyright permission are the responsibility of the faculty member or the academic department.
 
Who keeps the copyright permissions?
 
The faculty member is responsible for keeping the copyright permissions that he or she obtains from publishers, but the library reserves the right to view the permissions upon request.
 
How long should copyright permissions be kept after the item is taken off course reserves?
 
Copyright permission obtained through the CCC is granted for the life of the original photocopy. Since the person requesting permission has paid the royalties for that item, he or she essentially own that specific copy. Therefore, the original photocopy can be used repeatedly term after term without the need to obtain copyright permission in future terms for print.
 
Copyright permission must be obtained for each reproduction of a single item, so it is very important to keep track of the specific copy for which permission was obtained, and if multiple copies of a single item are needed, then permission must be obtained for each of those copies. Because copyright permission obtained through the CCC is granted for the life of the item, it is suggested to keep records of copyright permissions until the item is no longer needed or for at least 3 years, CCC's required time frame for maintaining official records.
 
The life of copyright permissions obtained through individual publishers may vary for print and electronic materials. Some grant permission on a term-by-term rule while others grant permission for the life of the item. Remember when requesting copyright permission to request permission for the longest possible time frame. Depending on how long permission has been granted, records of these permissions should be kept accordingly or for a minimum of 3 years.
 
What happens if a faculty member can't obtain permission for use of an item?
 
The Library reserves the right to refuse to place any new material on reserve or to remove any current reserve material if we feel that the reserve material meets any of the criteria below:
 
Material is in violation of the current copyright law or the fair use guidelines within that law
Material is in violation of other pertinent fair use guidelines.
A Faculty member has not obtained permission from the copyright holder for materials that fall outside the realm of fair use.