16.314 TEACH Act (U.S.)

From: Humanist Discussion Group (by way of Willard McCarty willard.mccarty@kcl.ac.uk)
Date: Sun Nov 10 2002 - 06:31:29 EST

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                   Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 16, No. 314.
           Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London
                         Submit to: humanist@princeton.edu

             Date: Sun, 10 Nov 2002 11:08:14 +0000
             From: NINCH-ANNOUNCE <david@ninch.org>
             Subject: TEACH ACT BECOMES LAW

    News on Networking Cultural Heritage Resources
    from across the Community
    November 4, 2002

                            TEACH ACT BECOMES LAW
                   American Library Association Release on Implications
              of the "Technology, Education and Copyright Harmonization Act"

                "New opportunities [but also] new limits and conditions"

    >Date: Mon, 04 Nov 2002 10:48:56 -0500
    >From: "ALAWASH E-MAIL" <ALAWASH@alawash.org>
    >To: ALA Washington Office Newsline <ala-wo@ala1.ala.org>
    >ALAWON: American Library Association Washington Office Newsline
    >Volume 11, Number 87
    >November 4, 2002

    In This Issue: Major Copyright Bill Affecting Distance Education
    Becomes Law
    On November 2nd, 2002, the "Technology, Education and Copyright
    Harmonization Act" (the TEACH Act), part of the larger Justice
    Reauthorization legislation (H.R. 2215), was signed into law by
    President Bush. TEACH redefines the terms and conditions on which
    accredited, nonprofit educational institutions throughout the U.S. may
    use copyright protected materials in distance education-including on
    websites and by other digital means-without permission from the
    copyright owner and without payment of royalties.
    TEACH establishes new opportunities for educators to use copyrighted
    works without permission and without payment of royalties, but those
    opportunities are subject to new limits and conditions. The American
    Library Association joined with numerous other associations and groups
    representing educators, librarians, and academic administrators to
    negotiate the language of the TEACH Act and to vigorously support its
    passage. The process of drafting the TEACH Act necessarily reflected
    the views of diverse interests, and some terms we would like to have
    seen in the law met with strong opposition from copyright owners
    concerned about protecting their creations and preventing widespread
    threats to their markets. On the other hand, the ALA and many other
    library and education groups were successful in adding many provisions
    in the bill that can significantly enhance distance education.

    To put the complexity of the issue in perspective, we need to grasp not
    only the growth of distance education, but also the magnitude of the
    copyright concerns at stake. Many materials that educators use in the
    classroom and in distance education are protected by copyright law.
    Copyright protection applies to most text, videos, music, images, motion
    pictures, and computer software; protection usually applies even if the
    work lacks a copyright notice and is not registered with the U.S.
    Copyright Office. Unless the work is in the public domain, or you have
    permission from the copyright owner, or you are acting within fair use
    or one of the specific, statutory exceptions, your copying, digitizing,
    uploading, transmitting, and many other uses of materials for distance
    education may constitute infringement.

    Previous law did include such a statutory exception for the benefit of
    distance education, but it was enacted in 1976 and has failed to meet
    modern needs. That statute (Section 110(2) of the Copyright Act)
    generally encompassed closed-circuit television transmissions, and it
    could not foster robust and innovative and digital educational programs
    that might reach students at home, at work, or at any other location.
    The TEACH Act repeals that statute and replaces it with a more complex,
    but more beneficial, revision of Section 110(2) and related provisions.

    Among the benefits of the TEACH Act for distance education are an
    expansion of the scope of materials that may be used in distance
    education; the ability to deliver content to students outside the
    classroom; the opportunity to retain archival copies of course materials
    on servers; and the authority to convert some works from analog to
    digital formats. On the other hand, the TEACH Act conditions those
    benefits on compliance with numerous restrictions and limitations.
    Among them are the need to adopt and disseminate copyright policies and
    information resources; implementation of technological restrictions on
    access and copying; adherence to limits on the quantity of certain works
    that may be digitized and included in distance education; and use of
    copyrighted materials in the context of "mediated instructional
    activities" akin in some respects to the conduct of a traditional

    Therefore, to secure full benefits of the law, educators and their
    colleges, universities, schools, and other qualified institutions will
    need to take deliberate and careful steps. Full implementation will
    likely involve participation by policymaking authorities, technology
    officials, and instructional faculty. Librarians will invariably be
    closely involved as they make their collections and other resources
    available to students at remote locations. Moreover, you will most
    assuredly need to consult legal counsel at your institution to be
    certain you are properly implementing the new law's provisions.

    To help with this effort throughout the country, the American Library
    Association is launching an initiative to provide guidance and to help
    interested persons so that they may better understand the new law and
    implement its requirements. Please watch for developments at this
    dedicated website: http://www.ala.org/washoff/teach.html. We have
    posted and will continue to update summaries and explanations of the
    law, together with guidance and other information to help the community
    enjoy the advantages of the new law and to strengthen innovative
    educational programs through the sharing of important information

    Moreover, we will take this opportunity for a fresh examination of the
    more general law of "fair use" as applied to distance education. Fair
    use was, and remains, a vital alternative whenever a more specific
    statute-such as Section 110(2) of the Copyright Act-fails to meet your
    needs. However, fair use also has limits. In the meantime, you can
    find a great deal of information about fair use on numerous websites,
    and in many books, including some copyright publications available from
    the ALA at http://alastore.ala.org.

    We welcome your comments and observations at any time about this
    project. For more information, contact Carrie Russell, Copyright
    Specialist at ALA's Office for Information Technology Policy,
    crussell@alawash.org or (800) 941-8478.

    ALAWON (ISSN 1069-7799) is a free, irregular publication of the
    American Library Association Washington Office. All materials subject to
    copyright by the American Library Association may be reprinted or
    redistributed for noncommercial purposes with appropriate credits.

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    ALA Washington Office, 1301 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W., Suite 403,
    Washington, D.C. 20004-1701; phone: 202.628.8410 or 800.941.8478
    toll-free; fax: 202.628.8419; e-mail: alawash@alawash.org; Web site:
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    Mary Costabile, Don Essex, Patrice McDermott and Miriam Nisbet. Office
    for Information Technology Policy: Rick Weingarten, Director; Jennifer
    Hendrix, Carrie Russell, Claudette Tennant. ALAWON Editor: Bernadette


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