Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Electronic Reserves

Cornell University announced that it has created guidelines and a fair-use checklist for its professors to help them avoid violating copyright law when they place materials on electronic reserve. According to a story in the Chronicle of Higher Education, the "guidelines were jointly written with officials from the publishing group...after the group sent a letter to the university complaining that it suspected widespread copyright violations on the campus." The publishers' concerns grew out of the perception that some professors believe that copyright law does not apply to electronic materials in the same way it applies to print materials. Allan R. Adler, an official with the Association of American Publishers, stated that "professors making articles available to students over the Web must use the same rules that apply when putting the articles in printed course packs." Cornell has posted the guidelines and checklist on its website. Adler said that his group considers cavalier use of electronic materials to be a "widespread problem," and hopes to work with other schools to create guidelines.

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