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Re: Bindings in NYC

-----Original Message-----
From: Michael Morin <ba202@FREENET.BUFFALO.EDU>
Date: Wednesday, May 26, 1999 11:27 PM
Subject: Re: Bindings in NYC

>At 01:22 PM 5/26/99 -0500, Jules Siegel <jsiegel@acnet.net>

>>Under American copyright law, the reproduction of a small
portion of a larger work for educational purposes with
attribution is called a fair use.

>Any individual using copyrighted materials without a formal
school affiliation is not within the law.  "Educational
purposes" does not mean "the general education of the
public" So if you are using materials to teach in a formal
classroom you are allowed fair use access to copy right
protected works.

Fair use is not restricted to educators. The rules apply to
anyone engaged in informing the public even if a profit is
involved. It's quite proper to quote a modest amount of
material or show a single illustration in a book, magazine
or newspaper without getting formal permission as long as
the material is properly attributed.

The main violation is commercial exploitation, such as using
even a few words or distinctive notes of a song in an

American copyright law is very flexible and is mainly based
on cases and precedents, rather than elaborate rules.

Here's a good example. An author (I forget his name)
examined all of Salinger's letters and paraphrased them
extensively and then published a book containing large
amounts of paraphrased letters. Normally, it's considered
fair use to paraphrase a protected document. In this case,
the court ruled that the paraphrasing was an unfair use. I
don't have the decision easily available, but it's a
well-known case. Although there were other considerations, I
believe that it was mainly based on the large amount of
material that the author used. It was just too much to be
considered a fair use. In effect, it was unfair for him to
produce an entire book by paraphrasing extensively from
another author's unpublished works.

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