Policy 76

University of Wisconsin-Parkside
Copyright Policy
Policy #76

76.01 Statement of Values:
The University of Wisconsin-Parkside recognizes and respects intellectual property rights. As part of our mission to maintain the highest standards for ethical conduct, we are committed to fulfilling our legal obligations with respect to the use of copyright-protected works, balancing the interests of ownership and access. Faculty, staff, and students are expected to follow copyright law. Individuals who illegally duplicate copyrighted works may be subject to disciplinary or legal action.

76.02 Sources of U.S. Copyright Law:

76.02.01 The Original Law

Article I of the U.S. Constitution authorizes Congress to pass legislation "to promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries." Congress enacted the U.S. Copyright Act (17 U.S.C. 106), which grants the owner of a copyrighted work the exclusive rights to:

  • reproduce or copy the work
  • prepare derivative works based on the original work
  • distribute copies of the work for
  • perform or display the work publicly

To be eligible for copyright protection, a work must be original and fixed in any tangible medium, including electronic and digital, and be one of the following eight categories of works:

  • literary works, including computer software
  • musical works, including any accompanying words
  • dramatic works, including any accompanying music
  • pantomimes and choreographic works
  • pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works
  • motion pictures and other audiovisual works
  • sound recordings
  • architectural works

76.02.02 Fair Use Exception

In using works for educational purposes, the most common exception to copyright use restrictions is "fair use." The fair use exception (17 U.S.C. 107) is a four-factor test that balances the rights of copyright owners in their creations against the public interest in the free exchange of ideas. The four factors are:

  • The purpose and character of the use.
  • The nature of the work to be used.
  • How much of the work is used.
  • The effect of the use on the market for the work.

Use of a copyrighted work need not satisfy all four factors to qualify as fair use; rather, the factors favoring fair use must outweigh the factors favoring obtaining permission. Online tools can help UW-Parkside faculty, staff, and students determine and document fair use of a given work for a particular use. See examples of these tools in the "Copyright Resources" tab on the UW-Parkside's copyright guide. For other campus policies and best practices associated with intellectual property, see this policy's appendix.

76.03 University Policy

76.03.01 Ownership of Copyrightable Instructional Materials

Under the UW System Policy on Ownership of Copyrightable Instructional Materials Policy 191, the employee may own all rights in his or her creations. A professor who creates a scholarly article while employed at a UW System institution would ordinarily own the copyright. The institution may have an interest, however, if it contributed substantial institutional resources in the creation of the work. "Substantial" resources could include providing the creator with paid release time from his or her job or allowing the employee exceptional access to specialized computer resources to create the work. In practice, when an author uses institutional resources to create a protected work, it is best to agree with the institution beforehand about ownership and control of the work. An appendix to the UW System Policy on Ownership of Copyrightable Instructional Materials, Policy 191, includes a sample agreement to allocate rights and interests in copyrighted works between the institution and the employee author.

76.03.02 Obligations Regarding Copyright

UW-Parkside sets forth these procedures for all faculty, staff, and students to demonstrate our respect for intellectual property and commitment to proper fair use:

  • The utilization of copyrighted work must meet the fair use exception. Copyright laws in the U.S. protect works even if they are not registered with the U.S. Copyright Office and even if they do not carry the copyright symbol (©). Copyrighted works may be in print, video, electronic, or digital form and include, but are not limited to, books, magazines, newspapers, cartoons, trade journals, training materials, newsletters, printed articles from publications, TV and radio programs, videotapes, compact discs, DVD's, music performances, photographs, training materials, manuals, documentation, software programs, databases, and webpages.
  • Faculty, staff, and students must obtain permission from copyright holders directly, or their licensing representative, when the reproduction exceeds fair use requesting permission to use copyrighted materials. Model permission letters, such as those found at Columbia University's Copyright Advisory Office, provide guidance on crafting such requests. Alternatively, permission may be obtained from centralized clearinghouses for the use of various kinds of works
  • Books or articles: Copyright Clearance Center
  • Musical works: ASCAP, BMI or SESAC
  • Motion Pictures: the Motion Picture Licensing Corporation, Swank
  • At UW-Parkside, the Provost is responsible for copyright policy. A campus copyright team copyright.team@uwp.edu provides recommendations for policy updates as the law and as technology offers new opportunities and challenges. This team, led by a designated librarian, also provides educational opportunities and an awareness of copyright issues on campus. Changes to the copyright policy are approved by the Chancellor's Cabinet.

Appendix: Access to Content & Use of Resources: Policies and Guidelines

  1. General Campus
    1. Acceptable use of the information technology policy #58
    2. File sharing policy #90
    3. Multimedia
    4. Videotaping
  2. Library
    1. Resources and Copyright Information
    2. Course Reserves
    3. Interlibrary Loan
    4. Music
  3. Creative Services
    1. Marketing
    2. Duplicating
  4. A/V
  5. Theater/Music/Arts

See UW System Legal's Frequently asked questions for help on general copyright questions


*Revised: Summer 2015, Fall 2022

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