Library Reserves - Fair Use & Copyright

Notice Concerning Copyright Law

The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material. CSUSM strictly forbids any copying or distribution of E-Reserve materials for transmission to others. Unauthorized electronic transmission of reserve material may make a user liable for copyright infringement.

Fair Use for Electronic Reserves

What is Fair Use? 

U.S. Code Title 17 provides legal definitions on reproducing, sharing, and other uses of copyrighted materials. Section 107 of this law allows for the "fair use" of materials and allows that reproduction for "purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching ..., scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright."

In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a “fair use”, the factors to be considered shall include:

  1. the purpose and character of the use
  2. the nature of the copyrighted work being used
  3. the amount and substantiality of the work being used
  4. the effect of the use on the market for value of the original

Proper attribution must be obtained for all works on Electronic Reserve. Faculty who wish to place a student paper or other unpublished work on reserve must obtain written consent from the author before the work will be added. Please contact Library Reserves staff to complete the Permission for Created Works form for student papers or unpublished works. 

Library Reserves staff will not place material on reserve that does not comply with Fair Use or violates copyright laws. 

For more information about Fair Use, visit: Copyright and Fair Use

Copyright for Media Reserves

The University Library at CSUSM adheres to the United States’ Copyright Law (Public Law 94-533) of 1976 as amended, and urge all members of the CSUSM community to be aware of and abide by it.  We also adhere to the Off-Air taping guidelines for educational purposes.  Only open broadcast (ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, PBS) may be recorded. Pay services such as HBO, Cinemax, Disney, and free cable-only services such as Lifetime, USA, and MTV, do not fall into the open broadcast category and cannot be taped and put on reserve.

The titles in the Media Library’s collections are not cleared for audio or video duplication without the written consent of the copyright holder therefore the following guidelines have been developed to assist the Cal State San Marcos Library users in understanding the amount of copying permitted under the copyright law. 

For more information about copyright, go to the CSUSM Copyright Website

General Copyright Guidelines for Media 

  • Movies can be an integral part of a course’s learning materials. Showing a movie as part of a course generally falls under Fair Use, because there is no charge for admission and the movie is an integral part of your curriculum.
  • Written permission from the copyright holder is needed when using extensive amounts or making whole copies of owned material.
  • The individual who duplicates audiovisual materials in the Library’s collection in whole or in part, assumes full responsibility for that action.
  • If multiple copies of copyrighted media materials are needed, they must be purchased unless permission is granted by the copyright holder for duplication.
  • The Media Library does not have equipment to duplicate from one international standard to another (i.e. PAL to NTSC). 
  • The Media Library does not handle any requests for duplication of audiovisual material.

The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code ) governs the reproduction, distribution, adaptation, public performance, and public display of copyrighted material. Any person who makes an unauthorized copy or adaptation of a copyrighted program, or redistributes a loan copy, or publicly performs or displays the program, except as permitted by Title 17 of the United States Code, may be liable for copyright infringement.



 Library Reserves 

  Who to Contact 

  Alysa Hernández

  Library Reserves Coordinator

  (760) 750-8363


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Additional Links

Managing your Library Reserves

Media Faculty Reserves Form

Media Streaming Troubleshooting

Library Reserves FAQ