How to Use

One way to use this site is to decide what question(s) you are asking.

Are you interested in learning basic copyright concepts, or do you need some help evaluating whether your use of content is a fair use?

Do you need help finding public domain, creative commons-licensed, or subscription database images, music, or videos for instructional purposes, or creating a multimedia project or website?

Did you receive a Stop It notice about a potential copyright infringement associated with your network account and have questions about what it is?

Are you creating a distance education course that you would like to add third party content to, to enhance your learning objectives?

Answers to copyright questions are usually complex and not straightforward because the law is flexible and every user situation is different. Don’t be overly concerned about the lack of structured limits defined in copyright law. More importantly, pay attention to the balance between your rights as a user and the rights of those who hold copyright to (vs., perhaps, those who created) the content. Toward that end, your risk in using copyrighted content, without permission of a copyright holder, is minimized.

You may not find a specific answer to your question on this site, but there is information to help you make a decision about your copyright conundrum. If you are still confused or concerned about your copyright issue, please call the Copyright Resources Office directly (703-993-2544). We are here to assist you!

Disclaimer: The Copyright Resources Office is not part of University Counsel and is not legal counsel to the university or to any members of the university community. A mission of the CRO is to provide information and education services to help members of the community better address their needs. The information received from the CRO is not legal advice. Individuals and organizations should consult their own attorneys.