Ramsey Library Policies

Electronic Reserve Access to
Copyrighted Materials

The library policy for electronic reserve reading services is developed from the fair use provisions of United States Copyright Act of 1976. Section 107 of the Copyright Act clearly permits the making of multiple copies for classroom use. Such educational copying is one of several examples of uses which do not require the payment of a royalty or the permission of the copyright owners provided that the circumstances of the use are fair as assessed by the four factors in section 107 of the Copyright Act, the text of which is as follows:

Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified in that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship or research, is not an infringement of copyright.

The University of North Carolina System is committed to complying with all applicable laws relating to copyright, and supports the responsible, good faith exercise of full fair use rights, as codified in 17 U.S. Code section 107, by faculty, librarians, and staff in furtherance of their teaching, research, and service activities.

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

The collections of UNCA’s Ramsey Library are purchased by the university for the nonprofit educational use of the UNCA academic community. All library materials are acquired with the understanding that there will be multiple uses of a limited number of copies. Libraries frequently pay a premium institutional subscription price for journals, which is considerably higher than the individual subscription price, for the privilege of supporting multiple academic users. The sole purpose of the electronic reserve system will be to facilitate the making of multiple copies for classroom use by students. Although fair use ultimately depends on the specific facts surrounding each proposed use, the following general procedures provide direction for the use of Ramsey Library’s Electronic Reserves:

General Procedures:

  1. All use of materials placed on electronic reserves will be at the initiative of faculty solely for the non-commercial, educational use by students.
  2. Photocopies to be copied or scanned for electronic reserves will be provided by the instructor, vertical-text, on letter sized, single-sided white paper, or from a floppy disk’s pdf or html file. Output will be in black-and-white, 200-300 dpi resolution.
  3. Works exceeding 30 pages will not be placed on electronic reserves, due to system memory & output quality. (If necessary, a single document may be broken down into two or more separate e-reserves).
  4. There will be no charge for access; the charge for copies made by students will be limited to the nominal cost of photocopies or computer print-outs.
  5. Copyright notice will appear on screen in the online reserve system and on copies made of reserve readings to indicate that materials may be covered by copyright law.
  6. Materials on reserve will be accessible only by faculty name and course name & number. In the future, other measures may be introduced to ensure that only students in the class have access to the reserve materials for the respective course.
  7. Neither ABC nor interlibrary loan materials will be placed on reserve.
  8. Ramsey Library will follow the principles of Fair Use when placing materials on reserve. 

Electronic copying and scanning of copyright-protected works for library reserves are indistinct areas of the law which may be addressed by the Supreme Court or in future revisions of the copyright law. Ramsey Library will continually monitor legal developments which may affect the fair use analysis of electronic reserves to ensure that library services are in compliance with copyright law. For more information, consult the UNCA Intellectual Property/Copyright Web site.

Approved: 6/25/02

Last revised: 8/12/13

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Comments to Noel Jones (nrjones@unca.edu).