Facts about Copyright

Information about copyright law and how it applies to digital media.

  • A work, in whatever medium, is protected by copyright law unless it has been placed in the public domain. Owners of copyrights hold exclusive right to the reproduction and distribution of their work. Unauthorized use and distribution of copyrighted works is illegal. Copyright law protects creators and publishers, just as patent law protects inventors. Unauthorized use and distribution of copyrighted works can harm the entire academic community. If unauthorized use and distribution proliferate on a campus, the institution may incur a legal liability. Also, the institution may find it more difficult to negotiate agreements that would make copyrighted products more widely and less expensively available to members of the academic community.
  • Unauthorized use and distribution of copyrighted works can deprive creators and publishers of a fair return on their work and inhibit the creation of new works. Respect for the intellectual and creative work and property of others has always been essential to the mission of colleges and universities. As members of the academic community, we value the free exchange of ideas. Just as we do not tolerate plagiarism, we do not condone the unauthorized use and distribution of intellectual and creative work.