Libraries and Copying: Section 108 Exemptions
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Section 108: What is it and why should I care?
When Congress drafted the 1976 Copyright Act, they included specific exemptions for libraries and archives. These exemptions are part of Section 108 of the Copyright Law, and they allow a library or archive to make copies of works without first getting the permission of the copyright owner.
Section 108 has some very specific requirements to exemption. To be eligible, libraries and archives must:
- have collections open to the public, OR available to others doing research in a specialized field (not just affiliated researchers)
- make copies without any purpose of direct or indirect commerical advantage
- include the original copyright notice from the work, OR if no original notice, a legend stating the work may be protected under copyright.
- make copies on "isolated and unrelated" occaisions so as not to engage in "systematic" copying
Section 108 in no way affects your right to argue a fair use. Additionally, it in no way trumps any contractual obligations that may be in place (these include license agreements or donor agreements).
Types of Copies:
- By Libraries for Libraries
- By Libraries for Users
- By Users for Users
More Resources on Copyright and Libraries:
- Making Copies for Preservation : Decision Tree
- Making Copies for Private Study: Decision Tree
- Section 108 Study Group Final Report