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Policy: XV.F.3

Issued: March 16, 1987

Owner: University Comptroller

Latest Revision:



All copyright policies (XV.F.1-9) are considered by the University to be out-of-date and under revision. New policies on Copyright Compliance will be issued by the University Library in early 2009. For general guidance in the interim, consult the following resources: US Copyright Office: http://www.copyright.gov/ and http://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ1.pdf The Association of Research Libraries: http://www.knowyourcopyrights.org/

1.0 Purpose

This policy describes the general guidelines for copying of copyrighted materials with special circumstances.

2.0 Policy [Top]

2.1 Uncopyrighted Published Works

Writings published before January 1, 1978 which have never been copyrighted may be photocopied without restriction. Copies of works protected by copyright must bear a copyright notice, which consists of the letter "c" in a circle, or the word "Copyright", or the abbreviation "Copr.", plus the year of first publication, plus the name of the copyright owner. As to works published before January 1, 1978, the notice must be placed on the title page or the reverse side of the title page, the first page of text, or the masterhead. A pre-1978 failure to comply with the notice requirements resulted in the work being injected into the public domain, i.e., lacking copyright protection. Copyright notice requirements have been relaxed since 1978, so the absence of notice on copies of a work published after January 1, 1978 does not necessarily mean the work is in the public domain. However, you may not be liable for damages for copyright infringement of works published after that date, if, after normal inspection, you photocopy a work on which you cannot find a copyright symbol and you have not received actual notice of the fact the work is copyrighted. However, a copyright owner who found out about your photocopying would have the right to prevent further distribution of the copies, if in fact the work were copyrighted and the copies were infringing.

2.2 Published Works with Expired Copyrights

Writings with expired copyrights may be photocopied without restriction. All copyrights issued 76 years ago or earlier have expired. Therefore, it should be assumed all writings 75 years old or more recent are covered by a valid copyright, unless information to the contrary is obtained from the owner or the US Copyright Office.

Copyright Office Circular R22 explains how to investigate the copyright status of a work. One way is to use the Catalog of Copyright Entries published by the Copyright Office. Alternatively, you may request the Copyright Office to conduct a search of its registration and/or assignment records.

2.3 Unpublished Works

Unpublished works, such as theses and dissertations, may be protected by copyright. If such a work was created after January, 1978, the work is protected under the new Act for the life of the author plus fifty years.

2.4 US Government Publications

Most US Government publications may be photocopied without restriction. The exceptions are:

3.0 Definitions [Top]

4.0 References [Top]

Policy XV.E.1, "Copyright Policy"
Policy XV.E.2, "Patent Policy"
Policy XV.F.1, "Copying of Copyrighted Materials: Introduction"
Policy XV.F.2, "Copying of Copyrighted Materials: Reproducing"
Policy XV.F.4, "Copying of Copyrighted Materials: Videotaping"
Policy XV.F.5, "Copying of Copyrighted Materials: Copying Works of Music"
Policy XV.F.6, "Copying of Copyrighted Materials: For Academic Purposes"
Policy XV.F.7, "Copying of Copyrighted Materials: Obtaining Permission"
Policy XV.F.8, "Copying of Copyrighted Materials: Infringement"
Policy XV.F.9, "Copying of Copyrighted Materials: Licensed Computer Software"

5.0 Approvals and Revisions [Top]

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