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Copyright Property Law Case. The particular case study that applies to this material is the case of Dr. Harold Hefner, who subscribes to a popular scientific journal that is published weekly and available on the internet. To access the online material he

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Educational Use of Copyrighted Property Copyright laws are complicated and usually have a gray area as to what is actually a violation of such laws. A copyright is the intellectual property of the author, which gives them the right to control the publication, distribution and adaption of the work (Gilmore, 1999). After a certain amount of time the copyright expires, at which time the information enters the public domain. There are many ways in which people can commit copyright infringement; such as the unauthorized use of an authors text, common on the World Wide Web, the unlawful downloading or sharing of recorded music, and the distribution of bootleg material, which is material that hasn't been officially released yet. Copyright protection is an issue in the scientific disciplines as well. The particular case study that applies to this material is the case of Dr. Harold Hefner, who subscribes to a popular scientific journal that is published weekly and available on the internet. To access the online material he has to log onto the journal's home page with his username and password. His research group is composed of several pre and post doctoral trainees. He makes his access information available to the lab trainees; he claims that this is no different than circulating the printed journals using a routing list. He encourages his trainees to print copies of applicable articles from the online journal. ...read more.


He would not be preventing further revenue that the publishing company could be gaining from the students. The second approach is to still allow the circulation of the scientific journals to the lab trainees and risk consequences punishable by violating copyright laws. People may consider this act as unethical because it is looked at as distributing the author's information unfairly to non-subscribing users. However, in accordance with the Fair Use Doctrine, Dr. Hefner has the right to copy the work for teaching and research purposes. The Fair Use Doctrine, a part of the United States copyright law, allows limited use of copyrighted material without requiring permission from the rights holder. This is very common in commentary, research, teaching, and criticism ("U.S. Copyright Office", 2009). Dr. Hefner is not gaining any profit from this act. He is not charging his lab trainees a fee in which they can access the online journal. He is paying for the information and sharing it for educational purposes. If he distributed the information and access to the online journal at a fee to cover copying and his subscription cost it would be considered unlawful. This solution is reasonable because he is allowing the knowledge and ideas of the scientific journal to be available to his lab trainees, which is not a large group of people. It could be considered unlawful to allow the access information to a large corporation, such as the entire university that Dr. ...read more.


The fair use activities must be related to commentary, research, teaching, and criticism. Other complications come into effect such as the nature of the work, the quantity and substance of the material being copied compared to copyrighted work as a whole (Harper, 2001). Also, the possible effects that copying the work could have on the market for the copyrighted material come into effect. It is considered unjust if the market for the product is hurt when sharing copyrighted material illegally. In Dr. Hefner's case, he is only giving them limited access to the journals which are applicable to their studies. The students shouldn't be obliged to pay for a subscription to the journal. They are only using a small amount of the material that Dr. Hefner is allowing them to use through the online catalog. All in all, the copyright laws and fair use policy are considered reasonable in Dr. Hefner's situation. These laws and policies are created to maintain the commercial integrity of scientific documents. They are not put in place to hinder the use of sharing information for the benefit of education. The fair use policy helps Professors share copyrighted information without violating copyright laws. By creating the protected online catalog of the scientific journals Dr. Hefner is not hurting the nature of the journal or the market for the journal. The online catalog helps the lab trainees in their research and doesn't put Dr. Hefner at any risk of breaking the copyright laws. ...read more.

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