Fair use

Copyright encourages creative expression in two big ways: by ensuring that the creator benefits from any sales, rather than someone else; and by protecting the critic or next creator that is inspired by the work.

The courts consider four tests to determine if you have the right to use text, images, video, sound and other creative works for your own purposes:

  1. The purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes
  2. The nature of the copyrighted work
  3. The amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole
  4. The effect of the use upon the potential market for, or value of, the copyrighted work

But there is not a firm line between Fair Use and copyright infringement; decisions are made on a case-by-case basis.


You have jumped in to the middle of our Media Literacy course. Would you like to start at the beginning, or choose a screen name and start from here?