Scholarship, Copyright & Fair Use

by Leslie Christianson

In the recent article “Fair Use Too Often Goes Unused” in The Chronicle of Higher Education, Noah Berlatsky looks at the tendency for publishers to require authors to request permission from copyright holders for use of work in scholarly publication.

Berlatsky discusses how this limits authors’ rights to utilize fair use and puts an undue burden on the distribution of scholarship. He notes that courts utilize the four factors of fair use to determine if a copyright holder’s rights have been violated; in many recent court cases, the use has been ruled fair. For publishers, it seems like a risk not worth taking, but Berlatsky shares some circumstances where asking permission causes some “serious ethical and practical downsides.”

As a Marywood faculty scholar, have you run into this issue with a publisher? Do you think it is unfair that publishers require you to get permission?

Tell us about your experiences with publishing and copyright in the comments or on our Facebook Page.


Read Berlatsky’s full article, “Fair Use Too Often Goes Unused” at:

Check out Marywood Library’s Fair Use, Copyright, and Scholarly Communications Research Guide for Faculty at:

Leslie likes to hangout in the woods and hopes one day to be adopted by a nice family of bears. As a matter of fact, in one of the parallel universes which she is confident exists, this happens. When she is not watching her two young boys play soccer and basketball, she draws, reads, and writes about scholarly communications and professional practice. She is the Copyright & User Services Librarian and Associate Professor at Marywood University.


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