The basic laws that govern the use of copyrighted materials are consistent regardless of media type. That is to say, the strictures that protect musical works from infringing activities are the same as those that protect books or video recordings or photographic images. And this same overlapping holds true for constitutional exceptions as well, for things like fair use and the face-to-face teaching exemption.
Due to the disparate nature of these different media types, however, and the emergence of new media over the past few decades, numerous guidelines and licensing agencies have sprung up in order to help educators remain in compliance.
Here you will find a collection of resources, licensing contacts, and best-practice guides-all grouped according to media type-which will hopefully answer any questions you might have regarding the use of media materials in the classroom.
The following sites provide some guidance for the use of music in performances, projects, and publications.
Video Recordings & Performance Rights
Copyright owners have the exclusive right to display and perform their works, including the projection of a film or a videotape. However, educators can still show films or videotapes without explicit permission from the copyright owner if the screenings are for educational purposes and are in accordance with Congressional guidelines.
The display or performance of an audiovisual work is permissible, provided the following conditions are met:
Prohibited Uses on Campus
Displays and performances of audiovisual works are prohibited in non-profit educational institutions when:
Online Teaching (Blackboard)
Section 110 of U.S. Copyright Law allows transmission of some materials to support true distance education, or online instruction that replaces regular classroom instruction (whether live or completed at the student's pace).
The TEACH Act specifies conditions under which educators may perform or display copyrighted works in distance education or online environments, including using only "reasonable and limited portions" of works that do not qualify as non-dramatic literary or musical works. Films and other audiovisual materials typically fall into this category. Thus the ability to perform or display audiovisual works in distance education or online via the TEACH Act may be more limited than in classroom settings.
Section 1201 of U.S. Copyright Law further prohibits the circumvention of encryption or other technological measures applied to copyrighted works, regardless of whether the intended use would be a fair use. However, an exemption was established by the Copyright Office for film studies professors to create compilations or clips of encrypted films, for their use in a classroom setting. This exemption is set to expire on October 27, 2009.
To perform or display a work "publicly" means showing it at a place where it can be viewed by more than one's immediate family or friends, whether or not everyone views it at the same place or at the same time. Private copies of films, whether purchased or rented, do not carry public performance rights. Even films shown for free and for educational purposes usually require you to obtain a Public Performance License if they are screened outside of the context of a specific class.
Obtaining Public Performance Rights (PPR)
The University of Idaho Library owns a number of video recordings which already include Public Performance Rights. A list of participating distributors can be found here.
If your proposed screening does not meet any of the requirements above, you will most likely need to obtain a Public Performance License. To this end, the following vendors may be of assistance:
Guidelines for Taping Off-Air Broadcast Programming
There are a number of restrictions placed on the use of videotaped copies made from broadcasted television programs. The two most critical limitations are:
Additional restrictions can be found in the Guidelines for Off-Air Recordings of Broadcast Programming for Educational Purposes, and are also listed in the Faculty-Staff Handbook (FSH 6580, section I).
The following resources provide some guidance for the use of images in projects and publications.
The University of Idaho negotiates site licenses with software vendors whenever possible for software products that are selected for extensive use. These arrangements provide the University community with efficient access to computer programs that support the curriculum, while at the same time assuring the copyright owner a fair royalty.
Software products that are not licensed to the University may also be used. However, copying is strictly limited except for backup purposes. Whether the software is transferred from the original to a detachable hard-drive or to an archival diskette, the backup copy is not to be used at all so long as the other copy is functional.
To view the University's full policy relating to software use, see the UI Faculty-Staff Handbook, FSH 6580, Section J.
Multimedia & Copyright
The following sites provide some guidance for the use of multimedia in teaching, projects, and publications.
Content in this page was used or adapted with permission from one or more institutions. Please see acknowledgements.