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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

  • In the GSU case, the wheels keep turning March 2, 2015
    NB — An embarrassing correction — the motion discussed below was actually filed by the plaintiffs, the publishers, not by GSU.  So this does look very much like the publisher intent is to go forward with new proceedings in the District Court.  And speculation below about what GSU intends is misplaced.  Sorry, folks. Spurred by … Continue reading In the GSU c
    Kevin Smith, J.D.

RSS IPKat Blog

  • Wu-Tang Clanger -- or have the rappers got it right? March 5, 2015
    Old Kats occasionally come back as guest Kats, which is why this weblog is so pleased to give a hearty welcome to this post by emeritus Kat Catherine Lee (a.k.a. Cat the Kat). Recent readers may not know that Cat is the author of two of this weblog's all-time most-visited blogpost, "Goodbye Cathy: Hello Kitty and Miffy settle copycat case", wh

RSS Dear Rich

  • My Boss Made Me Appear in Yelp Commercial March 4, 2015
    Dear Rich: My employer at a small law firm has required his whole staff (about 8 of us) to appear in a Yelp commercial video. Please note that all the employees had no choice but to do it, and although we signed a release, no consideration was provided in exchange for the release. The day of the shoot, we all signed a release form (no one had to actually rea
    The Dear Rich Staff