I. Introduction

The copyright policy of the Claremont Colleges affirms each institution’s commitment to comply with the United States law pertaining to copyright; to respect faithfully the property rights of authors and their assignees; to educate members of the campus community about copyright law; and to exercise vigorously the rights and responsibilities granted under this law.

Therefore this policy encourages all members of the community to publish their papers, books, and other works in order to share their knowledge openly with colleagues and the public. The policy adheres to the long-standing academic tradition that creators of works own the copyrights in works resulting from their scholarly, pedagogical, and creative activities. This principle is the foundation for our policy on copyright.

This principle also underlies the commitment of the Claremont Colleges to fostering an environment of respect for and responsible use of the intellectual property of others. The Claremont Colleges are committed to helping members of the community comply with copyright laws by providing resources to help individuals make informed, careful, and situation-sensitive decisions about the lawful and fair use of work created by others.

When considering the copying of any original work, determine whether:

  1. the work is protected by copyright,
  2. the work is available under a license agreement, or
  3. whether the intended use qualifies as a fair use, as determined using a case-by-case four-factor analysis.

If the intended use is not a fair use, then seek permission from the copyright owner.

II. Application

This policy applies to all faculty (including those on temporary appointments), staff, and students of the Claremont Colleges.

III. Copyright Ownership & Royalty Distribution

Policies governing copyright ownership and the distribution of income from royalties are the purview of each of the Claremont Colleges.

IV. Library Exemption

Section 108 of the copyright act sets forth specific circumstances under which a qualifying library may reproduce materials or portions of materials. Such reproductions are deemed so necessary and reasonable to the functioning of these libraries and to balance the exclusive rights of the copyright holder that prior permission of the copyright holder is not required. In addition to section 108 rights, a library may also exercise fair use rights under section 107.

As a “qualifying library” The Claremont Colleges Library is eligible for the exemptions outlined in section 108 of the Copyright Act and as such have developed policies to implement those exemptions. Those policies and accompanying procedures are published on The Library website.

V. Use and “Fair Use” of Copyrighted Works

A. Compliance with Copyright Laws

The Claremont Colleges expects all faculty, staff and students to make a reasonable effort in good faith to comply with copyright laws in their use of copyrighted materials.

B. Fair Use of Copyrighted Works

The Claremont Colleges encourage faculty, staff and students to take full advantage of the “fair use” exception to the exclusive rights of copyright owners. Before relying on the fair use exception, faculty, staff, and students should educate themselves regarding the limits of fair use and should, in each instance, perform a careful, good faith fair use analysis based on the four factors identified in Section 107 of the federal Copyright Act. Faculty, staff and students are strongly encouraged to document their fair use analyses as a defense against claims of copyright infringement. It is recommended that the Fair Use Checklist available from the University of Minnesota site be used for this purpose and that this completed form be kept for three years following the date of the last use of the copyrighted item.

C. Assistance with Copyright Compliance

Because of the complexity of copyright law and, in particular, the fair use exception, the Claremont Colleges will provide resources to educate faculty, staff and students and help them make informed, careful and situation-sensitive decisions about the lawful and fair use of works created by others.

D. Violation of Copyright Laws

Upon obtaining knowledge that material residing on its systems or networks is infringing or that its systems or networks are being used for infringing activities (or upon becoming aware of circumstances from which infringing activity is apparent), the respective institution will act expeditiously to remove or disable access to the infringing materials and may deny the individuals responsible further access to its systems or networks as determined by policies specific to each institution. In addition, members of faculty or staff or students or other employed persons who willfully disregard or violate copyright law may be subject to disciplinary action by the respective College in accordance with applicable disciplinary policies and procedures of that institution.

VI. Certification of Permitted Use

Individual faculty members are responsible for understanding the Colleges’ copyright policy and shall be accountable for actions that willfully disregard it. The Claremont Colleges’ responsibility in this area is to provide faculty members access to resources that allow determination of permitted uses. Faculty are responsible for consulting that information and applying it in accordance with the law. The Information contained on the consortial copyright website includes tools to assist faculty in making judgments about permitted uses of copyrighted materials.

A. Role of Academic Support Assistants

At no time will an academic support assistant reproducing or circulating copyright-protected material in accordance with a faculty member’s or supervisor’s written or verbal instructions be assumed liable for any failure to adhere to copyright law. This protection does not apply to material distributed or reproduced by academic support assistants without the instruction, written or verbal, of a faculty member or supervisor, or to material distributed or reproduced by academic support assistants in a manner that does not reflect such instruction.

B. Role of Student Employees

At no time will a student employee who is reproducing or circulating copyright-protected material in accordance with a faculty member’s or an academic support assistant’s written or verbal instruction be assumed liable for any failure to adhere to copyright law. This protection does not apply to material distributed or reproduced by a student without the instruction, written or verbal, of a faculty member, or to material distributed or reproduced by a student in a manner that does not reflect such instruction.

C. Academic Support Assistants, Student Employees, Administrative Staff

When employees, including support assistants and student employees operating in the capacity of academic or administrative support, and carry out instructions by faculty or supervisory personnel to copy or otherwise reproduce or distribute copyright-protected material, the College understands that the staff member or student employee has assumed no liability for ensuring compliance with copyright law. If, however, any employees believe that tasks they are instructed to carry out are not in compliance with copyright law, they may pursue the following options:

  1. seek written certification of compliance from the originator of the task;
  2. seek guidance from a supervisor who did not originate the task;
  3. request that the faculty or supervisory personnel obtain permission from that employee’s supervisor to carry out the task.

In all cases when academic support assistants, student employees in an academic support role, or other employees make a determination to reproduce or distribute copyright-protected material on their own initiative, they are expected to inform themselves of the policy of the Claremont Colleges for copyright compliance and conform to that policy. The copyright website of the Claremont Colleges includes tools to help any such employee make judgments about permitted uses of copyrighted materials.

VII. Administration of Copyright Policy

A. Implementation of the Policy.

Each of the Claremont Colleges will develop procedures and communications to inform faculty, staff and students about this policy.

B. Use and “Fair Use” of Copyrighted Works

Each institution will adopt procedures to implement the “Fair Use” section of this policy.

C. Amendment

The Claremont Colleges, under the auspices of the Deans’ Council, may amend this policy from time to time as it deems necessary or desirable, subject to applicable statutory and contractual restraints.