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Fair Use

Fair Use Criteria 

Fair Use exemptions apply to some educational uses of copyrighted materials in the classroom. However, it is important to note that the use of copyrighted works for non-profit, educational purposes is not the only factor to consider when determining if fair use applies. Additionally, simply citing a work that you copy, distribute, perform, or display does not mean that it is a fair use exemption.

There are four criteria, all of which must be considered, in determining fair use:

  1. the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
  2. the nature of the copyrighted work;
  3. 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.

There are no definitive rules on the application of these criteria, it is subjective and open to interpretation. Therefore, one must go through the criteria as they relate to his/her use of copyrighted materials and make an appropriate determination based on these criteria. 

Fair Use Analysis

This Fair Use evaluator tool created by Michael Brewer & ALA Office for Information Policy guides through an analysis of your use of copyright works:

Fair Use Liaison

The Fair Use Liaison, Jackie Burger (x8056 is also available to assist you with specific questions and to provide you additional information and explanation on this topic.