Film, TV and YouTube: copyright guide
These fair dealing provisions apply while you are an enrolled student. Once you have completed your studies, any copyright works used under the fair dealing provisions will require permission if the work is to be used for another purpose.
All uses of copyright works under these provisions must contain a credit statement/attribution referencing the creator/author of the work. It is best to include full reference details.
Using film, TV and YouTube
In a presentation
The Copyright Act (1968) allows students and researchers to show films and TV programs in class. A screening would happen during a presentation or as part of an assessment or exam to a closed or limited audience. A closed or limited audience is defined as students or class members.
This provision does not allow films or TV programs included into presentations to be recorded, copied, placed online, or shown as part of a public activity.
You are able to rely on the fair dealing provisions ‘research and study’ ‘criticism and review’ or ‘parody or satire’ to use snippets/clips from films and TV as part of assessment tasks. The use of clips/snippets under the fair dealing provisions must be for the genuine purpose of the provision such as criticising the film/TV program - forming an opinion on the work. Parody is transforming the original work into a new work that is either satirical or humorous.
The fair dealing provision of ‘research and study’ is a closed provision and only applies whilst you are enrolled as a student other uses such as public screenings or entry into film competitions will require the permission of the copyright holder
The provisions ‘criticism and review’ and ‘parody and satire’ are provisions that are open to the public, yet are untested areas of law. If you rely on these provisions, you are doing it at your own risk. Make sure it is a genuine act within the purpose of the provision, and adhere to the fair dealing factors.
Mashups incorporating commercially produced films, downloaded films, TV programs, clips ripped from DVDs or YouTube videos need to be assessed against ownership rights and copyright exceptions such as fair dealing for research and study.
Mashups can be created legally from out of copyright works where copyright has expired, or licensed works such as Creative Commons. See Duration of copyright guide (Australian Copyright Council).
Works protected by copyright such as commercially produced films, downloaded films, TV programs, clips ripped from DVDs or YouTube videos will most likely require the permission of the copyright holder in creating a mashup that is to be screened publicly, or entered into film competitions.
Most DVDs come with technological protection measures to stop DVDs from being unlocked, ripped/copied. Copyright law contains anti-circumvention (unlocking) provisions, it is a breach of copyright law to circumvent or unlock a technological protection measure.
If you have created a mashup using snippets from TV, and/or commercial films as part of your assignment or assessment, fair dealing allows you to present the mashup in class only.
Publishing online, including Canvas, blogs and wikis
The fair dealing provision for research and study allows the use of copyright works at RMIT for assessment tasks, such as blogs and wikis, that are hosted on RMIT platforms and require authentication. Copyright works can only remain online whilst you are enrolled. If you are no longer enrolled in the course, the works must be removed. It is your responsibility to remove all copyright works you have uploaded.
The fair dealing provision for research and study does not apply to posting to public sites such as blogger.com, Facebook, YouTube or alike. The fair dealing provision for research and study is a closed provision, which you can take advantage of while undertaking a course of study, or research.
You may embed videos from YouTube, Vimeo, and other media platforms into Canvas, websites, external blogs and social media channels, only if the video you wish to embed is not an illegal copy of a work. It must be a video that has been placed onto the video hosting site by the copyright holder.
Be careful when sourcing your videos from the video download sites. Unless you are certain that the videos were uploaded by the copyright owner, you might be downloading an illegal copy. By downloading or linking to this work, you will also be undertaking or authorising an illegal activity.
To find the copyright holder of the video, click on details for the uploader of the materials. See the 'Free stuff' section of the Copyright guide for links to open resources and Creative Commons films and videos.
Purchasing online copy
When you purchase a film or TV program from an online vendor, you will be asked to agree to their terms and conditions. This forms a personal contractual arrangement between you and the provider. If you wish to make use of the film or TV program that you have purchased online, you must meet the agreed terms and conditions. You will need a permission for any other use, including snippets or making a copy of the work.
In general, if you purchase a film or TV program online, it is for your personal use only.
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