Fair Use: A Flexible Defense | evanm | August 08, 2012


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Fair Use: A Flexible Defense

The U.S. Copyright Office have made abundantly clear that courts should apply the fair use defense flexibly and on a case-by-case basis. Keep this in mind as you read the material in this section.

Many universities point faculty members to Circular 21 published by the United States Copyright Office.

"The bill endorses the purpose and general scope of the judicial doctrine of fair use, but there is no disposition to freeze the doctrine in the statute, especially during a period of rapid technological change. Beyond a very broad statutory explanation of what fair use is and some of the criteria applicable to it, the courts must be free to adapt the doctrine to particular situations on a case-by-case basis. Section 107 is intended to restate the present judicial doctrine of fair use, not to change, narrow, or enlarge it in any way."

Circular 21 makes it very clear that nothing in the Copyright Act is meant to create a rigid test for the application of the fair use doctrine.


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August 05, 2013

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