What Can Be Put on Reserve?

A faculty member may place on reserve personal or library copies of books, sound recordings, video recordings, photocopies or electronic copies of articles or book chapters, and music scores.  Permission to use electronic copies and photocopies of articles will be requested by the library.  This is generally done through Copyright Clearance Center or direct requests to the rights holders.

Reproductions of printed materials do not require permission of the copyright holder if the material meets the brevity and spontaneity tests. Brevity is defined as either a complete article, story, or essay of less than 2,500 words or an excerpt from any prose work of not more than 1,000 words or 10% of the work, whichever is less. A minimum of 500 words is allowed in all circumstances. To meet the test of spontaneity, the copying must be done at the request of the teacher, and the decision to use the copyrighted work must be done so close to the time needed that it would be unreasonable to expect a timely reply to a request for permission to copy from the work. Any subsequent uses of a work that may meet the spontaneity or brevity requirements will require us to seek permission. In the case of musical scores, excerpts can be made provided that the excerpts do not comprise a part of the whole, which would constitute a performable unit such as a section, movement, aria, or song.

What Cannot Be Put on Reserve?

Under no circumstance will the library place on reserve a professor-created anthology or course pack of readings, unless the anthology has been created with the permission of the copyright holders or the materials are no longer subject to copyright law. Photocopied works in notebooks may be construed as anthologies, so professors are urged not to use notebooks to organize reserve materials unless such material is not copyrighted. Anthologies may also be defined as video clips from various copyrighted works placed on one videotape and audio recordings of various works placed on one cassette or CD.

If an item to be placed on reserve exceeds fair use guidelines, the library and the instructor will determine together whether to purchase an authorized copy or seek copyright permission for the unauthorized copy. The library will seek the permission and pay the associated fees. If the copyright holder denies permission, the library will remove the copy from reserve immediately.

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