There are several limitations on the exclusive rights of copyright holders, which means that under certain circumstances, no permission is needed when using a work.
Three that apply in educational settings are:
The U.S. Copyright Code allows for some performances and displays of copyrighted materials without needing permission.
§110(1) allows for in-class performances of certain works during face-to-face teaching.
To claim this exemption and use a work without gaining the copyright holder's permisison, all provisions listed below must apply:
If all of the above provisions apply, there is no infringement of copyright and no permission is needed to use the work.
Points to consider:
When recording class sessions,
When recording student musicals or plays,
Reserve readings are not intended for in-classroom use, so they are not be covered by §110(1) (but may be fair use).
When using student work in class,
The TEACH Act (Technology, Education, and Copyright Harmonization Act) was implemented in 2002 and replaced the previous §110(2), expanding the scope of educators' rights to perform and display works and to make the copies integral to such performances and displays for digital distance education, making the rights closer to those that pertain in face-to-face teaching.
But there is still a considerable gap between what the statute authorizes for face-to-face teaching and for distance education. For example, as indicated above, an educator may show or perform any work related to the curriculum, regardless of the medium, face-to-face in the classroom - still images, music of every kind, even movies. There are no limits and no permission required. Under 110(2), however, even as revised and expanded, the same educator would have to pare down some of those materials to show them to distant students. The audiovisual works and dramatic musical works may only be shown as clips – "reasonable and limited portions," the act says. Most of the TEACH Act requirements are designed to allow transmission of copyrighted works (or parts thereof) to a legitimate student audience for a limited time, without permission or license fees, while preventing dissemination that could undermine the market for the works. Nothing in this act is intended to limit or otherwise to alter the scope of the fair use doctrine.
To claim this exception and use a work without gaining the copyright holder's permission, ALL provisions listed below must apply:
Electronic reserves are not meant to be read or performed in class, so they do not fall under §110(2) (but may be fair use).
Please see "The Original TEACH Act Toolkit" by LSU Libraries for more detailed information including an overview of the TEACH Act requirements, compliance checklists, permissions guide, and FAQs.
Faculty who want to incorporate works into digital transmissions for instructional purposes pursuant to the TEACH Act must meet the following conditions:
This checklist, and much of the material in this section of the guide, was taken from the University of Texas copyright Web site. An excellent resource in helping you determine what is considered fair use - and other copyright questions - can be found at their Copyright Crash Course website. It is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, Copyright Crash Course and Georgia Harper. http://doi.org/10.15781/T24J09X6J
For those who are interested in the TEACH Act specifically, you may consult the TEACH Act Toolkit.