Warner Library - Eastern University
Warner Memorial Library - Summer Hours
Wednesday: 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

Copyright Compliance Checklist

To determine whether the materials in question will conform to our policy, analyze the proposed use according to the following checklist:
A. Determine whether the work is in the public domain or whether it is protected by copyright. 

B. Determine whether the work is licensed by the university (e.g., an article from an electronic database licensed by the university). If it is, determine whether your proposed use is permitted by the terms of the license. For example, you may be able to direct students to an electronic version of a journal article with a link, but not to download and copy the article and place it on reserve. If you need assistance in this process, contact the library (reference1777@eastern.edu or ext.1777). If the proposed use is permitted by the terms of the license, your analysis ends here.

C. Determine whether the proposed use falls within the Safe Harbor Guidelines (see below). If so, you can use the document as you propose.

D. If the proposed use goes beyond the Safe Harbor guidelines, you will have to apply the Fair Use Test.

E. Determine whether an item falls under the properties of Fair Use by using the Fair Use guidelines. Fair Use is not always your best avenue when trying to determine an exact answer to affirm or negate copyright compliance.

F. If the proposed use involves print or digital reserve, ensure that you have complied with the requirements applicable to those documents.
a. Is it an item to be placed on print reserve in the library?
b. Is it an item to be placed in the electronic learning environment?
c. Consider whether it may be more efficient for you to direct your students to articles in an electronic database licensed by the college.

G. If you need permission, you may ask for assistance or obtain permission on your own.

H. If you wish to use a copyrighted work in your distance learning course, analyze the proposed use as you would for any other work. If your proposed use does not constitute Fair Use or fit within the Safe Harbor guidelines, then you may wish to choose other material.

I. If there are questions at any stage of this process, contact the campus Copyright liaison.

"Safe Harbor" Guidelines

Fair use analysis is, in many circumstances, a complex and difficult analysis. As an alternative, private organizations representing educational institutions, authors and publishers have developed an Agreement On Guidelines For Classroom Copying In Not-For-Profit Educational Institutions With Respect To Books And Periodicals; representatives of music publishers and music teachers have developed Guidelines For The Educational Uses Of Music; and representatives of educational institutions, copyright proprietor and creative guilds have developed Guidelines For Off-Air Recording of Broadcast Programming For Educational Purposes. These three guidelines provide a "safe harbor" with regard to fair use, in that any copying or use within these guidelines should be well within the limits of fair use, although other broader activities may also be within the fair use doctrine.