Dartmouth Copyright Policy & Guidelines

Summary of Policy

A policy setting forth the expectation that Dartmouth community members will follow copyright law, Title 17 of the United States Code.

Affected Parties

All Groups

Policy Statement

Website Copyright Information

Copyright © the Trustees of Dartmouth College. All rights reserved.

Unless otherwise noted, all content on Dartmouth websites, including images, text, graphics, video and audio, is the property of Dartmouth College. Redistribution or commercial use without the expressed, written permission of Dartmouth College is prohibited. For information on usage rights, contact the Office of Public Affairs, 603-646-3661 or Office.of.Public.Affairs@Dartmouth.edu.

Digital Millennium Copyright Act Contact Information

Designated Agent

Sean R. McNamara
Dartmouth College
4 Currier St, HB 6028
Hanover, NH 03755

E-mail: copyright.complaints@cloud.dartmouth.edu

A summary of the DMCA is available at: http://www.copyright.gov/

Dartmouth Copyright Policy and Guidelines

Dartmouth community members are expected to follow copyright law, Title 17 of the United States Code, while fulfilling the core mission of teaching, research, and extending knowledge and creativity in all areas. The provisions in the copyright law allow an author, artist, composer or other creator of a work to control the use of his or her work by others, with important exceptions. Copyright protections and the accompanying exceptions extend to print and digital formats of literary works, musical works, unpublished materials such as manuscripts, dramatic works, pantomimes and choreographic works, pictorial and graphic works, sculpture, motion pictures and other audiovisual works, sound recordings and architectural works.

The Fair Use exceptions to the exclusive rights of copyright owners that are described in section 107 are critical to fulfilling the academic mission. Among other key sections of the Copyright law that support the academic enterprise are 108 (reproduction by libraries), 110 (performances), and 121 (reproduction for people with disabilities).

If a use does not fall under an exception to the exclusive rights of the copyright holder, use of copyrighted material requires permission of the copyright owner. A separate Dartmouth policy governs the ownership of copyrights to material developed by faculty and other College employees.

Questions regarding copyright law compliance should be directed to the Office of the General Counsel or the Dartmouth Library.

Peer-to-Peer File Sharing and Copyright Law

Frequently asked questions about the application of the Copyright Law to peer-to-peer file sharing.

Fair Use

"Fair use" is a copyright law doctrine that permits the reproduction or other use of a copyrighted work, without the copyright owner's permission, for purposes such as teaching, learning, scholarship, criticism, commentary, news reporting, satire, and preservation. The Copyright Act does not specify which uses are fair, but rather establishes a flexible four-factor analysis that those using copyrighted works can apply, and which courts employ on a case-by-case basis. The four factors in section 107 of the Copyright Act are:

  • The purpose and the character of the use, including whether it is for commercial or non-profit educational purposes
  • The nature or type of the copyrighted material (i.e., periodical, film, book, fiction vs. non-fiction etc.)
  • The amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the whole
  • The effect of the use on the potential market for or value of the copy-righted material

Key components of Fair Use analyses in recent court cases are these two questions:

  1. Does the use transform the material by either using it for a purpose different from that of the original intent or by repurposing the work for a different purpose?
  2. Are the amount and kind of the material used appropriate to the intended use?

These questions are discussed, along with examples of applications, in the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Academic and Research Libraries. This is a very useful tool for making a fair use determination in typical teaching, learning, and research situations. Codes of Best Practice in Fair Use have been developed for many other applications by scholars, artists, teachers, librarians, and other users and creators of content. Examples include Online Video, OpenCourseWare, and Poetry.

See Dartmouth Library Copyright Information for more details and assistance.

Copyright Guidelines for the Use of Materials on Course Web Sites and Course Reserves

Guidance to instructors, librarians, and support staff concerning the circumstances under which they may, consistent with the Copyright Law, place course materials on electronic reserves or on course websites.

Policy ID


Effective Date

January 1, 2016


Office of the President

Office of Primary Responsibility

Dartmouth Copyright