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Copyright Assistance

Welcome to the George Mason University Copyright Office (CO) website. The site offers information related to the interpretation and application of copyright law in higher education, with specific focus on the Mason community. Find out more about using proprietary, Creative Commons-licensed, and public domain content for instruction, research, and assignments.

Questions may be directed to Claudia Holland, Head of the Scholarly Communication and Copyright Office, if you don’t find the information you need on or through this site, or if you just want to talk about copyright! We welcome your feedback, questions, and concerns.

The column to the far right provides links to services and offices in the University Libraries and the broader Mason community that may be useful to you, depending on your need. Links in the column to the immediate right direct you to: material in proprietary databases to which the library subscribes, content in the public domain, and content licensed by Creative Commons. Use these links to search for media you may incorporate into your instructional materials, assignments, and websites. Be sure to cite all third-party content, no matter where it comes from!

A few words about the RSS feeds on this site: The Scholarly Communication @ Duke blog, written by Kevin Smith, J.D., M.L.S., reflects Smith’s personal opinions about current copyright issues affecting higher education. IPKat is a blog that addresses a wide range of intellectual property issues, like copyright, patent, trademarks, and confidentiality. This popular blog is maintained by a cadre of solicitors and other IP experts based in the U.K., Europe, Australia, and the U.S. Finally, Dear Rich, written by attorney and author Richard Stim and other Nolo staff, offers succinct responses (not legal advice)  to questions about copyright, trademarks, and patents. Selection of this site is not intended to promote Nolo products or services; we chose it for the Q&A.

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RSS Scholarly Comm @ Duke

  • How useful is the EU’s gift to libraries? September 16, 2014
    On Thursday the European Union’s Court of Justice issued an opinion that allows libraries to digitize books in their holdings and make those digital copies accessible, on site, to patrons.  In a way, this is a remarkable ruling that recognizes the unique place of libraries in the dissemination and democratization of knowledge.  Yet the [...] The post How use
    Kevin Smith, J.D.

RSS IPKat Blog

  • Copyright exceptions and user rights in Case C-117/13 Ulmer: a couple of observations September 20, 2014
    Should you have the right to digitise your cat's paws?Last week this blog reported on the latest addition to the copyright collection of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), this being the decision in Case C-117/13 Technische Universität Darmstadt v Eugen Ulmer KG.In this case the Court ruled that Article 5(3)(n) of the InfoSoc Directive,

RSS Dear Rich

  • Can I Use Stage Name to Credit Songwriting? September 19, 2014
    the diabolical Biz Markie creditshis songwriting to Marcel HallDear Rich: I use an artist name with a last name that is not my legal last name and has no relation to my birth name. I have no interest in legally changing my last name, and all my music copyrights are filed under my legal name. My question is when I credit myself on a CD with "music and ly
    The Dear Rich Staff