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HACC Library - Copyright Information

Using Media - Public Performance

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Copyright as it relates to public performance rights

If HACC has not purchased the public performance rights when it acquired the media, a copyrighted work may not be shown to groups of students or staff unless it meets the criteria which define a “face-to-face teaching” exemption to copyright law. This exemption allows for legally reproduced work to be used only:

  • in a classroom or similar place devoted to instruction, and
  • in the course of face-to-face teaching activities of a nonprofit educational institution, and
  • as long as there is no direct or indirect admission charge, and
  • if it is a regular part of the instructional activities, and if it is directly related to the teaching content

§ 110. Limitations on exclusive rights: Exemption of certain performances and displays

American Library Association - Performance of or Showing Films in the Classroom

In order to know which uses of audiovisual materials are permitted and prohibited by the Copyright Act, educators need to understand two key terms: performance and display.

Free Feature Films, Documentaries and More

Free video collections online. Documentaries, educational films, films of historical interest, music videos, video art and more.

Using Video or Video Clips

Most videos today are protected by content scrambling systems (CSS), technological protection measures (TPMs) or digital rights management (DRM), and it is a violation of the law to circumvent these protections to copy material from a video.

Getting Public Performance Rights

Obtaining a public performance license is relatively easy and usually requires no more than a phone call. Fees are determined by such factors as the number of times a particular movie is going to be shown, how large the audience will be and so forth. While fees vary, they are generally inexpensive for smaller performances. Most licensing fees are based on a particular performance or set of performances for specified films. The major firms that handle these licenses include:

Films, Inc: 800-323-4222
Swank Motion Pictures, Inc: 800-876-5577
Motion Picture Licensing Corp (MPLC): 800-338-3870
Criterion Pictures: 800-890-9494

Copyright & Media Web Sites

Vendors that Sell Movies with Public Performance Rights

Many vendors of educational videos/DVDs sell institutional versions of titles that automatically come with public performance rights. All titles purchased from the following vendors are institutional versions that come with public performance rights:

More Vendors that Grant Public Performance Rights for Copyrighted Movies

Vendors that Grant Public Performance Rights for Copyrighted Movies

If you want to show a copyrighted film in a public setting, you will need to contact one of these licensing service companies to obtain permission.