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This guide provides a basic overview of copyright law, fair use, copyright for instructors, and other copyright related resources.

What is Fair Use?

To create a balance between the interests of those who develop intellectual and creative works and those who benefit from accessing and using those works, copyright law includes the exception known as Fair Use.

Under the Fair Use provision, a copyrighted work may be copied or reproduced without permission of the author for the purpose of criticism, commentary, news reporting, teaching, research and scholarship, depending upon whether the use meets the four factors of fair use.

(1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;

(2) the nature of the copyrighted work;

(3) the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and

(4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

U.S. Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C., Section 107
Limitations on Exclusive Rights: Fair Use

Understanding the Four Factors of Fair Use

Tutorial on Fair Use for Instructors

This tutorial provides an overview of the four factors of fair use and offers examples of how fair use applies to specific types of copyrighted material in educational settings. 

Fair Use Checklist

Fair Use Resources

Your Librarian

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Khaleedah Thomas

Informational Purposes Only

The materials and information on this guide are intended for informational purposes only. CSU Libraries make every effort to assure the accuracy of this information but do not offer it as counsel or legal advice. Please consult the University's Office of the General Counsel or your own attorney for advice concerning your specific situation.


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