Legal Issues of copyright law that affect students and teachers in the 21st Century
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10 ways you might be breaking the law with your computer: UPDATED | TechRepublic

10 ways you might be breaking the law with your computer: UPDATED | TechRepublic | Legal Issues of copyright law that affect students and teachers in the 21st Century | Scoop.it
Legislation that affects the use of Internet-connected computers continues to grow in its reach and its complexity. To help you avoid any infractions,
Denise Moe Smith's insight:

This article describes how using the computer could be illegal.  The NET act that was implemented made copyright infringement a Federal crime rather than a civil crime.  It is relatively easy to break these laws without really knowing or understanding how.  In BMG Music v. Gonzalez, 430 F.3d 888 (7th Cir. 2005) court decision, Gonzalez downloaded over 1300 songs, with the argument being that she was "trying" out songs.  Even as teachers, we may think that we are trying things out, but in reality, it is breaking the law.  No matter how good intentioned our motives may be, they can still be illegal when searching for materials to use online.  If downloaded illegally, the TEACH Act and Fair Use policy will not help.

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Vikki Howard's comment, March 17, 2013 6:42 PM
I don't disagree with your thesis--though I would love to see a more direct link to classroom teachers. For example, what did you learn about the TEACH Act that could apply? Fair Use?
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NEA - Legal Controversy Over Lesson Plans

NEA - Legal Controversy Over Lesson Plans | Legal Issues of copyright law that affect students and teachers in the 21st Century | Scoop.it
Who owns your work? Probably not you. Why your selling your lesson plans online could land you in a legal lurch.
Denise Moe Smith's insight:

This is another indepth article on the slippery side of selling lessons plans.  We all know we aren't teaching for the money and this is a way that many teachers supplement their incomes.  However, there is still the question of who lesson plans belong to.  The  Copyright Act of 1976 describes lesson plans as owned by the employer because the employee is hired and creating those plans as a part of their employment contract.  The slippery side of this can be determined of whether or not that teacher is creating those lessons as a part of his/her employment contract and does the district really own them.  In the decision of Community for Creative Non-Violence v. Reid, 490 U.S. 730 (1989),  it created an opportunity for teachers to be able to create lessons plans and copyright them as independent contractors, it does help some teachers figure out if they are independently contracted.

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Vikki Howard's comment, March 17, 2013 6:46 PM
Great article selection--I agree with you, that lesson plans help teachers make ends meet. At the same time, it makes no sense to me that schools, which do not operate on the basis of a revenue generating entity, should have no interest in teachers' works. Like every other part of copyright law, this principle is nuanced as you point out.
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Teacher’s Copyrights | kreid1aa's blog

Teacher’s Copyrights
Denise Moe Smith's insight:

This article deals primarily with how and if lesson plans can be copyrighted by the teacher or if they are the property of the school district.  With websites that enable the selling of lesson plans, this becomes a viable topic and one that needs to be taken seriously.  In Williams v. Weisser, 78 Cal. Rptr. 542 (Ct. App. 1969), gives teacher exceptions to common-law copyright of the employer owning the materials in this particular case.  This applies primarily to lecture notes (which can be seen as lesson plans), but not to tests, quizzes, and homework problems (also can be used in lesson plans).  This is why each case in very different and needs to looked at thoroughly.

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Vikki Howard's comment, March 17, 2013 6:47 PM
More analysis of copyright law pertaining to "work for hire" issue. What exceptions were supported in the Williams case?
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QUESTION OF THE MONTH: Students Using Copyrighted Music in School Projects

QUESTION OF THE MONTH: Students Using Copyrighted Music in School Projects | Legal Issues of copyright law that affect students and teachers in the 21st Century | Scoop.it
The Center for Social Media showcases and analyzes media for public knowledge and action—media made by, for, and with publics to address the problems that they share.
Denise Moe Smith's insight:

This article reviews how teachers should handle students using copyrighted material in their projects.  If students are using copyrighted music and they are obtaining the music through file share without directly owning the material, they are inviolation of the Copyright Act of 1976 and the TEACH Act as well.  This can have huge implications as seen in Capitol Records, Inc. v. Thomas, 579 F. Supp. 2d 1210 - Dist. Court, Minnesota 2008.  Thomas was charged with  illegally downloading 24 songs.  After finally going through the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals in 2012, Thomas had to pay $220,000 to the recording studio.  If the music was bought legally and used for educational purposes, showing only as directed by the TEACH Act, then the student is fine to use the music, but if the music was obtained illegally, it cannot be used.  The same holds true for teachers as well.

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Vikki Howard's comment, March 17, 2013 6:52 PM
This case is directly related to the dangerous copyright turf--the complexity of these laws and the importance of being "on top" of the guidelines. Good summary Denise.
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Copyright Law for Teachers: What You Need to Know About Fair Use, Making Copies & More

An explanation of copyright law for teachers, including educational exceptions. How do I know if something is copyrighted and what can I use in my classroom? How long does a copyright last and what rights does a copyright holder have?
Denise Moe Smith's insight:

This article actually gives a very nice overview of what we can and can't do when it comes to copyright laws.  It is not as detailed as the book, but it is very well organized and goes through all of the important topics that we have to worry about in our classrooms as we prepare material for our students.

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