Confused About Copyright? 4 Tips for Teachers
These days there’s a lot of images floating around the internet. Sometimes it’s hard to tell when something is in the public domain (free to use), has a Creative Commons license (can be used with certain limitations), is for commercial use (for-profit use), or is copyrighted without permission to reuse.
Knowing the basics of copyright can help you choose images appropriately and even craft lessons centered around the key points of copyright and its uses. To help you stay within the lines, we’ve put together some tips and tools for finding content that works for you.
Tip #1: Ask yourself where the image came from.
Sites like Photopin and Flickr are good places to start. Here you can filter images by commercial/non-commercial use, check to see what type of Creative Commons licenses are being used and search a wide variety of images that can be used to illustrate lessons.
Tip #2: Look for signs of copyrighted work before using.
- Does the image have a watermark/byline?
- Does the image have a copyright symbol?
- Is the image from a reputable news source?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, chances are this is an image that is not available for reuse. Usually, copyrighted works require permission from the agency/photographer. Often times this means there will be a fee accompanying permission.
Tip #3: Question the image use.
If you are staying within the educational/teaching realm, you may be able to benefit from “fair use.” This is a copyright law that enables copyrighted works to be used without permission if its use is deemed “fair.” Teaching, commenting on, criticizing or parodying copyrighted works are all deemed protected within “fair use.”
Tip #4: Know these helpful terms.
Here are some helpful definitions when figuring out if your content is safe to use.
Commercial Use: used in conjunction with profit. This applies to any business use and any purpose that intends to promote a brand/business. Use in a company blog would be commercial.
Fair Use: copyrighted works may be used without permission if its use is deemed “fair.” An example would be commenting, criticizing, parodying, or teaching a copyrighted work.
Non-Commercial Use: for use that doesn’t intend to make a profit. An example of this would be for use in an educational lesson that is without monetary gain.
Public Domain: works in the public domain are available to the public as a whole. An example would be a work with a copyright that has expired.
Creative Commons (CC): a license that enables free distribution of copyrighted works. Authors who enable CC licenses want to give people the ability to share, use and build upon their original works–with restrictions. The Creative Commons search engine is a good place to visit.
Want more? The U.S. Copyright Office is another helpful resource.
Are you creating a lesson centered around copyright use? We want to know about it. Tweet us at #ProQuest or comment below!
This entry was posted on Wednesday, February 22nd, 2017 at 8:00 am and is filed under General. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.