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Copyright Compliance Guidelines

Photocopies on Course Reserve

The Library’s policy concerning photocopies of copyrighted materials on course reserve is defined by the Copyright Act (17 U.S. Code), sections 107 and 108. It is subject to change as the law is further interpreted and tested.

Copyright compliance guidelines are presented below. We urge faculty to read them carefully and to contact the Circulation Department (508.531.1392) if you need further clarification.

For your convenience, a sample letter for requesting permission to reproduce copyrighted material is available electronically or at the Circulation Desk. Please allow enough time to receive the permission before the materials are needed for Reserve.

Single Copies on Course Reserve

A single copy of any of the following copyrighted materials may be placed on reserve for a course by faculty for one term only:

  • A chapter from a book
  • An article from a periodical or newspaper
  • A short story, short essay, or short poem, whether or not from a collective work
  • A chart, diagram, graph, drawing, cartoon, or picture from a book, periodical, or newspaper.

Multiple Copies on Course Reserve

Multiple copies of copyrighted materials on reserve must meet the following restrictions:

  • Copies must be brief: (Poems: less than 250 words if complete, or not exceeding 250 words if excerpted; Prose: complete article, story, or essay of less than 2,500 words, or an excerpt not exceeding 1000 words or 10% (whichever is less) of the longer work, but in any event a minimum of 500 words; Illustrations: one per book or periodical issue)
  • Copying must be spontaneous (the need to use the work leaves too little time to request copyright permission)
  • Copying may not be cumulative:
    1. The copying is for only one course and one term;
    2. Not more than one short poem, article, story, essay, or two excerpts may be copied from the same author, nor more than three from the same collective work or periodical volume during one class term.
    3. There shall not be more than nine instances of such multiple copying for one course during one term. [Limitations 2 and 3 shall not apply to current news periodicals and newspapers and current news sections of other periodicals.]
  • Each copy shall include a notice of copyright.
  • Copies shall not substitute for anthologies, compilations, or collective works or substitute for the purchase of books or periodicals.
  • Faculty must request permission from the copyright holder if use of the copy is to be repeated from term to term by the same instructor or if it is used in a course taught in multiple sections by several instructors.

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