April 27, 2017

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Copyright: Will We Always Be Behind the Times? | Tech Tidbits


High school teacher librarian and Tech Tidbits columnist Phil Goerner shares some of the resources he used in a recent class on copyright and fair use.

3-D Printers: Understanding Copyright, Fair Use, and More


An ALA information policy analyst outlines the legal issues relevant to 3-D printing in public and school libraries—and explains why librarians should lead the way in creating acceptable use policies for this technology.

This article was published in School Library Journal's May 2015 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Anil Dash Keynote Rallies Librarians to Demand a Web for the People | TDS14

Anil Dash Keynote Rallies Librarians to Demand a Web for the People | TDS14

In an intellectually provocative keynote speech focusing on the privatization of the Internet, Dash called upon librarians to raise their voices and demand a more transparent, public Web.

Educator Spotlight: Renee Hobbs, Director of URI’s Media Education Lab

Educator Spotlight: Renee Hobbs, Director of URI’s Media Education Lab

Supporting digital literacy, lobbying for fair use, taking on media propaganda. It’s all in a day’s work for Renee Hobbs, director of the Media Education Lab at the University of Rhode Island.

Top Instructors to Teach Free MOOC on Copyright for Educators & Librarians

Registration is now open for the four-week Coursera MOOC, which runs from July 21 to August 18, 2014.

ALA Plans Copyright Tweetchat for Educators


The American Library Association’s copyright expert, bestselling author Carrie Russell, will field questions from school librarians, teachers, principals, and superintendents during a free tweetchat on January 7.

Fair Use in Libraries: The Infographic


Fair use is the broad, flexible doctrine that will allow libraries to meet mission in the digital age. A new embeddable infographic, developed by the Association of Research Libraries  and American University’s College of Law and School of Communication, with funding from the Mellon Foundation, illustrates how librarians navigate in a sea of copyrighted material, […]

Book Giveaway: Informational Text Par Excellence… ‘American Comic Book Chronicles’

So does this sound like something that could get the teen and tween comics fans you know into nonfiction? Sure it does.

Book Giveaway: Informational Text Par Excellence… ‘American Comic Book Chronicles’

So does this sound like something that could get the teen and tween comics fans you know into nonfiction? Sure it does.

Phone Phreaks and Intellectual Property

Phone Phreaks and Intellectual Property

On January 11, a young computer programmer and internet activist named Aaron Swartz was found dead of an apparent suicide.  For those not familiar with him, Swartz, just 26 at his death, was involved in a huge array of groundbreaking information tools, such as RSS (which he helped design), Reddit, the Open Library, and the […]

Maryland School District Copyright Policy Could Impact Teachers’ and Students’ Original Works


Earlier this month, Prince George’s County (MD) Board of Education made waves when it proposed a copyright policy that aimed to grant the district sweeping copyrights to works produced by staff and students, including lesson plans and digital apps. The proposal reignited widespread debate about the fairness of copyright guidelines in the K–12 arena. We caught up with Carrie Russell, the ALA’s copyright expert, to learn how educators can help preserve the rights of content creators in their own districts.

John Green Tackles Copyright Via YouTube

John Green Tackles Copyright Via YouTube

Copyright law is arduous enough, but throw in an instance of international remixing by nerdfighters, and you have a real mess. But in the hands of author John Green, it’s also the basis for a pretty cool video.

Interview: ALA’s Carrie Russell Talks About Copyright in the Classroom

Carrie Russell

SLJ talks to Carrie Russell, director of the American Library Association’s Program on Public Access to Information, about her book Complete Copyright for K–12 Librarians and Educators, a useful tool to help school librarians and teachers better understand copyright law.

Copyright and the DVD Dilemma

To upload, or not to upload: that is the question

Illustration by Tom Bloom

Is it legal to copy a DVD onto my school district’s server? As general counsel for a company that publishes and distributes educational videos and sells video-on-demand servers that digitally deliver them to the classroom, I get that question from educators all the time. And the answer is: it depends.

If you’re dealing with copyrighted works, things can get complicated, but let’s start with what you as a […]

A New Script: Can works of fiction be adapted for Readers’ Theater?

Can works of fiction be adapted for Readers’ Theater?

As part of a program for young people, we’d like to adapt a children’s book for Readers’ Theater. The resulting script will be presented in a school or public library. I’ve come across a lot of helpful tips on how to transform a book into script, but I haven’t found anything on copyright issues. Is it OK to adapt a work of fiction?

—Bethany Lafferty, assistant branch manager, youth services department head
Green Valley […]

Q&A from Recorded Books Be Quiet! I’m Listening! Incorporating Recorded Books into K-12 Literacy Strategies Webcast

Can audiobooks be downloaded onto laptop tablets since we are a 9th-12th grade college prep tablet school?

The copywright agreements we have for Playaways, CDs, and cassettes pertain to those delivery systems or formats specifically, so, in general, Recorded Books is not in a position to authorize downloads to computers. I think before long some of these obstacles will be overcome. – Jean Stephens, Recorded Books

Do you plan to have the most popular storytime tales in abridged […]

Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad ©?

It’s time to make some risky choices

Few subjects spark more disagreement and confusion than copyright. As an information professional, I’m often not certain that I have a firm grasp of it.

And I’m not alone.

The authors of the 2007 report “The Cost of Copyright Confusion for Media Literacy” coined the term hyper-comply to describe how many of us respond to copyright. According to the study by American University’s Center for Social Media, educators often “over-comply with copyright law, and even forego […]

A Common Cover-up | Carrie on Copyright

Is it really legit for libraries to make copies of DVD covers?

We’d like to display our DVDs—just the cases, not the contents. Can we make copies of the original covers (which have the bar codes) to circulate along with the actual discs?

—Susan Clayton, assistant county librarian
Lake County Library, Lakeport, CA

Yes, it’s fine to make copies of the covers. There are two key reasons why your use is a fair one: the library purchased the DVDs for nonprofit, educational purposes, and […]

Carrie on Copyright: Rules of the Game

Is it legit for libraries to offer video game competitions?

Lots of school and public libraries are hosting gaming tournaments, featuring popular video games like Guitar Hero and Madden Football. Since these games are intended for home use, isn’t that similar to purchasing a movie and showing it to a large audience?

—Curtis L. Clark, library media specialist
Harrisonville (MO) Middle School

Everyone seems to be asking that question! Video games come with licensing agreements, and before purchasers can play the games, they must […]

Mural, Mural on the Wall

Under the copyright law, even fictional characters have rights

We would like to paint book characters on the walls of our library. Is there a resource that will tell us if a character is copyrighted? —Derek Edmisten, media specialist, Hardin Park Elementary School, Boone, NC

Copyright is automatic. One attains copyright protection as soon as his original, creative expression is fixed in a tangible medium. Copyright registration is no longer required. There is no one place to find out what is […]