Librarians as Authors and Publishers of Copyright Materials


As part of a series of courses on copyright law and licensing that I teach, one is called Copyright Principles for Authors and Publishers. Anyone may enroll in this course and those who are pursuing a Certificate in Copyright Management and taking the required eight courses must also take Copyright Principles for Authors and Publishers.

The Balance in Copyright

This course was a later addition (only offered since 2012) to the Certificate program that focuses primarily on copyright and licensing issues for libraries (though editors, authors, publishers and others do take the courses.) Why was this course added? The introduction course to copyright management discusses balance in copyright law and yet the other seven courses in the program examine and discuss copyright principles and scenarios from the perspective of a user or consumer of copyright-protected materials.

Copyright Consumers are also Authors and Owners

This newer course rounds out this knowledge.  If you are primarily a user of content, you’ll be able to apply fair use or fair dealing and negotiate permissions and licenses for digital content much better if you can also approach your task from the perspective of a copyright owner.

In addition, almost all of those who use copyright-protected content are also creating content of some kind. It may be a photograph, research report or assessment/evaluation document. As creators of content, it’s important to understand the rights you have in that content and how you want to share the content with others, for example, for free or through a Creative Commons license.

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