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Copyright and Fair Use : Copyright Basics

This guide includes resources for faculty and students to use to answer their questions concerning Copyright and Fair Use.

Copyright Liaison


This webiste provides overviews of copyright related policies. Information on additional resources, such as books and websites are also available on this site. Visit Copyright@Bucks

Copyright Books @ Bucks

Complete copyright : an everyday guide for librarians / Carrie Russell [editor] ; with contributions from Dwayne K. Buttler...[et al.] ; illustration[,] Jessica Abel. [Chicago]: American Library Association, c2004.

Try our automatic search for the subject " copyright" in BCCC library catalog.

About This Guide

This guide is designed to answer many of the questions faculty and students may have concerning current copyright regulations as they pertain to the educational environment.Topics include fair use, DVD/video usage, print materials and distance education. Video tutorials are provided to give additional insight into the sometimes confusing world of copyright.

What is Copyright?

Copyright is a form of protection provided by the laws of the United States (title 17, U.S. Code) to the authors/creators of “original works of authorship,” including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intellectual works. Copyright law further allows the owner of copyright the exclusive right to do and to authorize others to reproduce, prepare derivative works, distribute, perform, or display works. It is illegal for anyone to violate any of the rights provided by the copyright law to the owner of copyright.

Adapted from Copyright Basics, circular 1 rev: 07 ⁄ 2008, United States Copyright Office

Policy Statement

Bucks County Community College (BCCC) adheres to federal copyright laws protecting the rights of owners of works of intellectual property. It is the responsibility of every member of the College to follow the copyright laws set forth by Congress in the Copyright Act of 1976, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and the Technology Education and Copyright Harmonization Act (TEACH Act). BCCC educates its community on the ethical and acceptable uses of protected works and will correct any known infringements. Furthermore, BCCC implements technological measures, such as password protection of online course spaces and electronic reserves, to prevent distribution of copyrighted materials used legally and ethically in online course spaces from being accessible beyond them.

Peer to Peer File Sharing

Peer-to-Peer (P2P) file sharing is the sharing of digital media through an informal network in order to upload and download files. Materials shared in this format must be accompanied with the right to share the material. Failure to procure or identify the right to share results in unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material, subjecting the users of the content to civil and criminal liabilities


If a student violates Copyright via peer-to-peer sharing, the incident will be reported to the Behavioral Intervention Team. Members of the team investigate and respond to the charge accordingly. See and the Student Code of Conduct 



Possible legal penalties include:

  • The infringer pays the actual dollar amount of damages and profits ($200 to $150.000 for each item infringed upon plus legal fees)
  • The Court can issue an injunction to stop the infringing acts.
  • The Court can impound the illegal works.
  • The infringer can go to jail.