Skip to main content

Using Copyrighted Works

Find resources and recommendations on making legal and ethical use of copyrighted scholarly work.

Commonly used exceptions to Exclusive Rights

Sections 107 through 122 of the U.S. Copyright Law provide limitations and exceptions to the exclusive rights of the copyright owner.  The most significant of these for academe, is probably Sec. 107, Fair Use, which receives its own "tab" on the left of this page.  Many of the rest of these exceptions and limitations address the specific requirements of the broadcast industry and special formats such as sound recordings, images, sculpture and architectural works.  Here are the most commonly used exceptions:

Sec. 108:  While Section 108 addresses the particular needs of libraries, it is this section which provides the ability of libraries to make copies for both preservation purposes and for the needs of their scholarly clientele.

Sec. 110:  Section 110 embodies much of the work of the TEACH Act and authorizes certain uses of copyright materials.  Key to these uses is that the performance or display of a copyrighted work be used "in the course of face-to-face teaching activities of a nonprofit educational institution." (Sec. 110-1).  A detailed and useful review of the provisions of the TEACH Act and Sec. 110 may be found below in the Resources box.


Resources for Exceptions to Exclusive Rights

Georgia Harper. Copyright Crash Course: The TEACH Act.  Harper's detailed analysis of the provisions of Sec. 110 is followed by a handy checklist.

Peggy Hoon.  The Original TEACH Act Tool Kit.  Hoon's Toolkit includes two checklists to the somewhat detailed and specific requirements of the TEACH Act as well as a useful glossary to the language of the Act.