Is it OK to "steal" pictures for school reports, etc?

Started May 20, 2013 | Discussions thread
Jeff Veteran Member • Posts: 5,087
Hate to keep harping on this ...

Greenville wrote:

Antioch wrote:

Educational Use is exempt from Copyright Laws. Otherwise, nobody would be able to learn anything.

The key is that it is used for educational purposes, and not resold etc.


The fair use in education is pretty well established, but is not universal. As the other poster mentioned for profit activities in education are not covered by fair-use.

Fair use is pretty well established in education -- that part's true.  But it is also strongly limited. Most schools have guidelines on the use materials under the fair use doctrine, and they typically include quite strict limits.  Links to example guidelines are posted elsewhere in this thread.

I'm not sure what you mean by 'not universal'.  If you mean limited then that's true.  But fair use is universal in the sense that it does apply to everyone in both commercial and non-commercial settings.

Commercial activities are definitely included within the fair use doctrine. The classic example is the use of a cover illustration or a product photo when writing a review for a commercial publication (DPR, for example), or quoting from a book when writing a critique.

Fair use is one of the most complex topics in copyright law. It's hard to nail down to simple truisms like commercial versus non-commercial, or educational versus non-educational uses.

If you're concerned about fair use -- and you should be if you are an educator, trainer, or other person who uses source materials in their work -- then it's worthwhile learning the basic outlines of the concept.  In particular, there is an extensive list of common misunderstandings, several of which have been cropping up in this thread.

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