Fair Use Videos
Fair Use in Documentary Film
Fair Use and Free Speech explains the Documentary Filmmakers' Statement of Best Practices in Fair Use. It shows when and how it is legal to use copyrighted material within a documentary film. It’s a powerful tool for media criticism and freedom of expression.
In Refrigerator Mothers, about an era when mothers were blamed for their children's autism, J.J. Hanley and David Simpson quoted popular films of the era. In this section, you can see what clips they purchased, which clips they employed fair use for, and their reasonings for each decision.
For classroom use - For each video, ask your students to consider the following questions: Why is this video fair use? What specific categories of fair use does the video employ? What arguments can you make for why this video is fair use? For explanations of each video, click here.
Filmmakers have been successfully employing fair use, even before the Statement of Best Practices clarified their common understandings. Here are some examples of uncontested choices for fair use. They are organized here according to the principles that filmmakers articulated in the Statement, in the categories used in the Statement. These categories are only four of the most common situations for filmmakers; some uses could be hybrid, and others might fall outside these four categories. We welcome more examples at firstname.lastname@example.org
In 2004, Center director Pat Aufderheide and Peter Jaszi, director of the Program on Intellectual Property and the Public Interest at the Washington College of Law, released a study, Untold Stories: The Creative Consequences of the Rights Clearance Culture, that explored issues working documentary filmmakers' faced with copyright law. This short video summarizes the results of that study, and provides background for the newly released Documentary Filmmakers' Statement of Best Practices in Fair Use.
What does the legal record tell us about fair use in documentaries? Not very much, because there have been so few cases. Between 1996 and 2007, there were only nine cases, and only five plaintiffs in total, since two plaintiffs each brought three of the cases. None of the plaintiffs have been motion picture studios or large archives. In most cases, the defendant won. Where the defendant did not win, the defendant had behaved in ways that documentarians who wrote the Documentary Filmmakers' Statement of Best Practices in Fair Use would not approve.
Fair Use in Online Video
A video that explains why the Code for Fair Use in Online Video got created, and how the Code can help you create online videos that employ fair use of copyrighted material.
For classroom use - For each video, ask your students to consider the following questions: Why is this video fair use? What specific categories of fair use does the video employ? What arguments can you make for why this video is fair use?
When is it fair and legal to use other people's copyrighted work to make your own? What's the line between infringement and fair use? Take this tour of remix culture classics, and use the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Online Video to make your own decisions.
Elisa Kreisinger is "a feminist video remixer making better stories about women that don't revolve around men (or babies!) through remix storytelling." You can check out her work, including her most popular remix work of Sex and the City at her website . Here, she offers her choices for fair use video of the month. If you love them and feel inspired to make your own video, check out our Code of Best Practices in Online Video and Elisa's free remix resources and start remixing!
Marymount Manhattan College students Billy Shields and Stuart Kiczek re-purpose old copyright black-and-white footage to illustrate a more modern point about how consumers can cut down on expenses by filtering their own tap water at home instead of purchasing bottled water. They use only enough of the third party images as necessary in order to give the rest of the footage the feel of a much older film.
Fair Use in Media Literacy
To read the full Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Media Literacy, click here.
"Fair Use Is A Right," was created by AU Alum Kristian Perry and features the Dramatic Chipmunk! Share this with your friends on Facebook and Twitter and spread the word about fair use!
When is it fair and legal to use other people's copyrighted work to make your own? What's the line...
CourtTV used a small excerpt of the same footage of Reginald Denny
Los Angeles New Service v. KCAL-TV, 1999 & Los Angeles New Service v. Reuters Television...