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10 December 2007

Library Hosting Brown Bag Web Conference on Copyright Issues
Pertaining to Colleges and Universities

The library will sponsor a brown-bag web conference on copyright—"Applying Fair Use Doctrine to Colleges and Universities"—at 12:00 noon, Tuesday, December 11, on the 11th floor of the Houston Cole Library.

According to the presenters, the web conference will help attendees:
  • Understand the origins and evolution of fair use
  • Determine if the use of a particular work is fair under the law
  • Learn how fair use applies to materials used in the classroom
  • Understand how fair use pertains to electronic reserves
  • Craft policy around fair use doctrine
The workshop is free and no registration is required. The web conference runs from noon until 1:30, so bring a lunch, if desired. Drinks will be provided.

Workshop Overview:


Copyright issues are central to the mission of colleges and universities, but often copyright policies fail to reflect the current legal landscape. Actual fair use doctrine has been neglected by institutions’ reliance on the Classroom Guidelines negotiated by publishers, authors, and educators in advance of the Copyright Act of 1976. Though not legally binding, educators have found the Classroom Guidelines attractive due to their formulaic nature. However, institutional leaders must understand current fair use doctrine and craft institutional policies around it in order to ensure legal compliance.

Target Audience:

Staff responsible for the creation and enforcement of institutional copyright policy will leave this event with the knowledge they need to apply fair use doctrine. This includes policy officers, legal counsel, university librarians, academic deans, and department heads.

Program Agenda:

ON-DEMAND Presentation
  • The origin of fair use
    • Folsom v. Marsh
    • Gray v. Russell
    • The four elements
  • Educational fair use
    • MacMillan v. King
    • The transformative nature of the use
    • Wihtol v. Crow
    • Williams & Wilkins Company v. United States
  • The 1976 Act
    • Section 107
  • The erosion of the right of educational institutions to use copyrighted works for nonprofit educational purposes
    • The Classroom Guidelines
      • Do not have the force of law
      • Are not binding
      • Establish a safe harbor?
      • Influence on the content of university copyright policies
    • The course pack cases
      • AAP, Addison-Wesley Publishing Company v. New York University
  • The problem with the Guidelines
    • Confused by the participants and the courts
    • CONFU
    • CONTU
    • The concept of spontaneity
    • University press, et al., v. Michigan Documents Services
  • Permission fees – the fallacy of circular reasoning
    • Fair use: right or simply a defense
    • Sony v. Universal Studios
    • American Geophysical Union v. Texaco, Inc., et al.
  • Summary: where we are today
    • Course packs are not permitted
    • Multiple copies for classroom use
    • Campbell v. Acuff-Rose, Permissions


    Wesley D. Blakeslee, Associate General Counsel, The Johns Hopkins University

    Wes is Associate General Counsel at The Johns Hopkins University, where he practices intellectual property and complex business law. Wes began his professional career as an engineer and systems analyst with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

    While in private practice, Wes served as Director of Computer Development at the University of Maryland Law School, where he also taught Computer Law. In February 1999, he became Associate General Counsel at The Johns Hopkins University.

    An active member of the National Association of College and University Attorneys, Wes serves as a resource on intellectual property law to all types of colleges and universities. He is frequently a featured speaker at national, state, and local conferences, as well as on behalf of bar associations and numerous conference organizations. Wes has been cited as a national authority on intellectual property issues in the New York Times, the Chronicle of Higher Education, and other publications.

    Source: Academic Impressions

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