Services include:

  • Customized Presentations
  • Consultations
  • Copyright Permission Requests
  • Referral to Resources


Each individual in the Ohio State University community is responsible for understanding and complying with the copyright laws of the United States, Title 17, U.S. Code, and when applicable, of foreign countries.

Obtaining Permission to Use Copyrighted Works

Copyright services helps students, faculty and staff members of The Ohio State University Health Sciences seek copyright permissions needed in conjunction with teaching and research. We are available to help you even if your copyright permission request is not related to library use.

What is Fair Use?

As defined in Section 107 of the U.S. Copyright Act, fair use is a defense against charges of copyright infringement determined through the analysis and application of the four fair use factors:

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

Fair use frequently function as an exemption to the copyright law for educational and socially important purposes such as teaching, research, criticism, commentary, parody, and news reporting.

When Does Fair Use Apply?

Using a copyrighted work for non-profit educational purposes is not automatically fair use; it is only one of the factors to consider in making a finding of fair use. Anytime that you wish to use copyrighted material without permission you should consider the four fair use factors.  

It can be difficult to determine if your intended use fits within the limitations of the fair use statute.  Fortunately we have developed a Fair Use Checklist that you may use to help make this determination. The Fair Use Checklist can be used to document your decisions regarding use of the material.

Disclaimer: The information on these web pages and any copyright recommendations provided by the library is not legal advice