All students are expected to make a good faith effort to respect the rights of copyright owners by the exercise of the following principles:

  1. Most materials (regardless of form, format, or notice) are copyrighted. Copyrighted materials may include print publications, works of art, photographs, music, sound recordings, and video recordings. If students cannot determine that a particular work is not copyrighted, they should assume that it is.

  2. Permission may be required for reproducing, distributing, modifying, displaying, and performing all copyrighted works. If permission is required and granted, follow all of grantor’s instructions. If permission is denied, do not use the materials. Permission may not be required if the use falls within certain exceptions under the law. For example:

    1. Some uses may be permitted under the “fair use” doctrine (codified in 17 U.S.C. SS107) in certain circumstances and for specific purposes if the weighing of several factors favors a reasoned conclusion for fair use. To act in “good faith” an individual should consider the fair use factors to determine if the intended use if fair use. These factors include (i) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes, (ii) the nature of the copyrighted work, (iii) the amount and substantiality of the portion taken in relation to the copyrighted material as a whole; and (iv) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted material.

    2. Educators and students may perform or display (not copy) a copyrighted work in the course of face-to-face teaching at a non-profit educational institution in a classroom or other place normally devoted to instruction (codified in 17 U.S.C. SS 110).

  3. Ultimate responsibility for obtaining permission(s) and/or determining exceptions rests with the individual. Students should be honest and show respect for others, especially in decisions and choices requiring subjective judgements, as is often the case in copyright decisions.

Students are reminded that unauthorized copying and distribution of copyrighted materials, including unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing, may incur civil and/or criminal liabilities. Activities such as uploading or downloading unauthorized copies of text, movies, games, computer software, and music (or any other material protected by copyright) may also incur serious personal consequences such as terminating all College computer privileges or affecting student’ status at the College.