Copyright Policy for Reserves
The NCSU Libraries Reserves Copyright Policy supports and advances the Constitutional principle that the fundamental purpose of copyright is to promote the progress of science and the useful arts through the broad dissemination of information in a manner consistent with current copyright law. The NCSU Libraries' course reserves system serves to provide valuable readings and other materials that support the instructional requirements of specific courses. Essential to effective fulfillment of the Libraries' foundational role in the university setting is the confident and lawful exercise of legitimate use rights as set forth in the fair use provision, Section 107 of the United States Copyright Act of 1976.
Section 107 Fair Use:
For institutions of higher education, the cardinal portion of the Copyright Act is Section 107 of the Copyright Act, the fair use provision. This section sets forth the factors that must be evaluated in determining whether a particular use, without prior permission, is a fair and, therefore, permitted use. The legitimate and lawful application of fair use rights provides the necessary and Constitutionally envisioned balance between the rights of the copyright holder versus societal and educational interests in the dissemination of information.
Section 107 is as follows:
Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified in that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include:
- The purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
- The nature of the copyrighted work;
- The amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and
- The effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.
All collections of the NCSU Libraries -- regardless of physical format -- are purchased by the university for the nonprofit, educational use of students and faculty. All library materials are acquired with the understanding that there will be multiple uses of a limited number of copies. The library frequently pays a premium institutional subscription price for journals, which is many times the individual subscription price, for the privilege of supporting multiple academic users.
Electronic Reserves is an extension of traditional library services and will be provided in a manner that respects fair use rights, the rights of copyright holders, and current copyright law. The electronic copying and scanning of copyright protected works for library reserve service and distance learning are unsettled areas of the law which may be addressed by courts and/or legislation. The NCSU Libraries will continually monitor legal developments that may affect the fair use analysis of Electronic Reserves services to ensure that library services are in compliance with the letter and spirit of the U.S. copyright law. For guidelines pertaining to Electronic Reserves, see "Copyright Guidelines for Electronic Reserves, NCSU Libraries."