The Copyright Act gives the owner of a copyright the exclusive right to reproduce and distribute their work. One exception to this exclusive right is called the fair use exception: The fair use exception permits the reproduction of a portion of a copyrighted work without the copyright owner's permission, under certain circumstances. This is a vitally important exception for education, as it enables students, scholars, and critics to use and reference copyrighted works in their own scholarship, teaching, and critiques.
Four factors are considered in all fair use evaluations. They are:
- Purpose & character
- Nature of the work
Resources below can help you understand these factors and determine if your situation qualifies under Fair Use.
See the resources below for guidelines about specific formats or educational situations.