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Northwestern University

Are you getting the most from fair use?

In honor of Fair Use Week (Feb.  23 – 27), Northwestern University Library invites scholars, teachers and researchers to take a closer look at the use of intellectual property in their work, and how it can help promote scientific discovery and education despite the specter of copyright restriction.

Fair use and fair dealing, according to the Association of Research Libraries, “allow the use of copyrighted materials without permission from the copyright holder under certain circumstances.”

For example, the Library makes its own case for fair use with its online sharing of the historic Winterton Collection photographs that document a century in East African life. The 7,610 photos in the collection –some copyrighted, some in the public domain – are available for non-commercial research, teaching and private study.  While we believe this delivery is permitted under the Fair Use provision (Section 107) of United States Copyright Law, copyright holders can still request removal of images through University channels.

Understanding this territory may seem overwhelming at times, which is why the Library offers tools that help faculty navigate the doctrine of fair use and fair dealing in pursuit of their own research:

Like all research libraries, Northwestern University Library pursues a mission to enable teaching, research and learning through our diverse holdings. We are here to help our community get the most of these materials during Fair Use Week and every week.
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