Copyright at the University of Guelph
All universities and libraries in Canada are required to comply with Canadian copyright law. This means that copying and distributing materials, regardless of format, is subject to certain limits and restrictions. The law applies to everyone at U of G including faculty, staff, and students.
Almost any format you can think of is subject to copyright protection: books, journals, newspapers, performances, software, sound recordings, videos, works of art, photographs, and other resources. Copyright also protects content found on the internet. Copyright applies as soon as a work is created; no registration is required. In Canada, copyright protection for a work generally lasts for the lifetime of the author, plus 50 years.
Canadian copyright law protects the rights of copyright owners, but users of copyright-protected works also have rights within the law. The Copyright Act includes exceptions that allow users to copy and share works in certain circumstances, without having to seek permission, or pay copyright fees. Fair dealing is the best-known, and the most used exception, as it’s available to anyone and allows copies to be made in a wide range of circumstances. The University’s Fair Dealing Policy describes this exception in more detail.
The library is home to the University’s Copyright Officer. The role of the Copyright Officer is to provide guidance on using copyright-protected works and to promote awareness and understanding of the rights and obligations that each of us has with respect to copyright. General guidelines on permitted copyright practices in the context of library and university activities are outlined in the Copyright Guidelines.
Do you have questions about copyright?
You may have questions like:
- What kinds of works are covered by copyright?
- When can I make copies without requiring permission?
- What is fair dealing?
- Can I use content from a YouTube video in my presentation?
We can help you find the answers to these questions and more.
Services for faculty & instructors
- We ensure all materials placed on course reserve comply with the Copyright Act and the University’s Fair Dealing Policy and will obtain and pay for copyright permission as required.
- We can advise you on all your copyright questions for your teaching, research, and publishing
If you need assistance, we can help. Contact us.
- Copyright Guide for Instructors (PDF - 150kb) - A detailed guide to making copies for instructional purposes for all formats of copyrighted works.
- CARL Copyright Open Educational Resource for University Instructors and Staff - A series of seven accessible, bilingual, self-directed modules created by the Canadian Association of Research Libraries that provide basic copyright education for university instructors and staff. Each module consists of a short video, a quiz, and accompanying text. Topics range from the basics of Canadian copyright law to how to assess fair dealing to understanding Creative Commons licenses.
- University of Alberta’s Opening Up Copyright Series - A series of videos with accompanying quizzes that take a deep dive into a wide range of copyright topics.
- Copyright Act of Canada
- Canadian Intellectual Property Office, Copyright Division
- Creative Commons
- Acceptable Use of Online Resources