• Posted on: 11 December 2009
  • By: Elisa

In last night's three-hour copyRights workshop, we explored the legalities of using copyrighted material in new work, brainstormed ways to effectively implement a fair use of copyrighted material and discussed different concepts of ownership.

Below is a resource list compiled from the class. Look it over and explore the sites as they have multiple layers of relevant information for producers of online video and documentary content. However keep in mind that no list can make up for the value of group discussion and dialogue, brainstorming and spontaneous conversation about navigating the waters of media production so please sign up for our next copyRights class on Wednesday, March 10 from 6:00pm-9:00pm at CCTV.

US copyright law has several features that permit quotations from copyrighted works without permission or payment but only under certain conditions. Fair use is the most important. Producers need to be familiar with Fair Use and know that it's a case by case judgment call, which they can help make themselves based on the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Online Video.

What problems might you encounter if you continue to use copyrighted material without consulting the codes? Legal action on behalf of the copyright holders as well as take down notices from content distribution sites such as YouTube. However, if you’re feeling confident your work is legal but you’ve received a notice that it’s not, check out a site that will help you navigate the dispute process.

For some history on the removal of content from video sharing sites, despite it being a fair use, see the Electronic Frontier Foundation's website.

Want to avoid using copyrighted material all together? Creative Commons is a great resource as well as and CCTV's Bandwidth Music Library is an invaluable database to have at your finger tips.


The copyRights workshop sounds interesting. Any additional web sites would be most helpful.