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Copyshop Violates Copyright Law

Copying and selling sections of textbooks constitutes copyright infringement.

Key point. Unauthorized duplication of copyrighted materials may violate the copyright law.

A federal appeals court ruled that a copyshop violated the copyright law by making "coursepacks" for sale to university students. The copyshop copied substantial sections of copyrighted texts, bound them into coursepacks, and sold them to students who needed them to fulfill reading assignments. A number of publishers of academic texts sued the copyshop for copyright infringement. The copyshop claimed that its copying amounted to permissible "fair use." A federal appeals court ruled that the copyshop had committed copyright infringement. The court noted that "fair use" is a defense to copyright infringement, but it insisted that this is a narrow exception that did not apply in this case. The copyright law does not define fair use, but it does list four "fair use factors" that may be applied in ...

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  • May 1, 1997