Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
JavaScript disabled or chat unavailable.

Copyright at MHC

How-to's

Share a persistent link if you want others to easily access an article off campus.

A persistent link, also know as a permalink or stable link, is a URL that connects directly to a full text article within a library licensed database. 

To create a persistent link, go to the library web page and search the title of the article you want to share, click on the title, then look for the permalink or link button usually on the right hand side of the page. Each database looks a little bit different, here's an example:

and another one:

When you click on the permalink button, a link will appear at the top of the page. This is the link you should share. Here's an example:

and another one:

 

Need help? Email reference@mhc.ab.ca and we can help you create a persistent link. 

As a student or staff member of MHC you have access to articles, eBooks, and videos from online library databases. A list of databases is accessible through the "Database List" on the library's home page or by clicking here.

When you attempt to access electronic library materials from an off campus location, you will first be asked for your credentials. This is your 14 digit barcode number that can be found at the bottom of your student/staff id card. 

If you do not have a student ID card and don't know your student ID number you can find it online in the student Dashboard.

MHC staff and students have access to digital materials from other libraries through interlibrary loan. 

Search for the article you are interested in obtaining, you may have to broaden your search to include libraries worldwide for your items title to appear in your search results. You can do this on the left hand side of the library search page: 

Once you've found the title of the item you are interested in. click on it, you should see a "request item from another library" button halfway down the page, click on it and fill out the form that appears.

 

Once your request comes in it will be forwarded to you via email. If you have any questions please email illo@mhc.ab.ca.

FAQ's

 

Copyright Basics

What is Copyright?

What are the laws & rules relating to copyright at MHC?

What materials are protected by copyright? How do I know?

What materials ARE NOT protected by copyright?

Who owns copyright in a work?

What kind of rights does the copyright owner have?

How long does copyright last?

Is registering copyright optional or mandatory?

If a work doesn’t have the © symbol does that mean it’s not protected?

How do I get permission to use someone’s work?

Copyright For Students

As a student, what can I legally copy?

Is there a limit to how much I can copy?

Can I use another person’s images/materials in my assignment or class presentation?

Why am I not able to download or print an entire e-book?

As a student, are works I create protected by copyright?

Copyright for Instructors

Is there a limit to how much I can copy?

Can I make copies of copyright protected works to hand out to my students in class?

What is fair dealing, and why should I care about it?

Can I use copyright protected works for tests or exams?

Are there any databases I can use for free (without worrying about copyright)?

I’ve come across a recent journal article that I’d like to give out to my students.  Can I photocopy it and hand it out?

What if a book I want to copy is out of print?

Why am I not able to download or print this entire e-book?

Can I include copies of another person’s images & materials in my Power Point presentation?

Is it okay to use images or other material from the internet for educational purposes?

Is everything on the internet fair game?

Do I need to ask permission to link to a website?

Can I show a YouTube video in class?

Can I play a TV News program in class?

Can I use Netflix in the classroom?

Can my students perform a play in the classroom?

Can I post copies of copyright protected work on Blackboard? Can I email copies to my students?

Can I upload a PDF of a journal article I obtained through the libraries databases to Blackboard?

Can I scan a print journal article or book chapter into a PDF and post on Blackboard?

Can I embed YouTube videos to Blackboard?

Can I post examples of my students’ work to Blackboard or on my personal website?

What materials can be scanned and placed on Library Reserve?

Can I play music in class?

Can I bring a movie from home or from the library to show in class?


What is Copyright?

Copyright is a set of rights that relate to the reproduction of works. Works include text, art, music, dramatic works and computer programs, as well as sound recordings, performances and communication signals. Copyright belongs to a works’ creator.

Only the copyright holder can reproduce a work or authorize others to do so.

What are the laws & rules relating to copyright at MHC?

Link to Copyright Compliance Policy?

What materials are protected by copyright? How do I know?

Copyright protection is automatic as soon as an idea is expressed in a fixed form (this means put on paper, recorded, published, blogged, e-mailed, etc.)

Copyright belongs to creators of the following material:

  • Literary, dramatic, artistic, musical works (e.g. book, letter, e-mail, blog, computer program, compilation, government publication, script, play, film, painting, sculpture, photograph, map, architectural drawing, sheet music, compositions, music video, etc.)
  • Sound recording (e.g. lectures, animal sounds, nature sounds, music, audio book, etc.)
  • Performances (e.g. dancing, singing, acting, etc.)
  • Communication signals (e.g. pay-per-view, radio, satellite, broadcasts, etc.)

What materials ARE NOT protected by copyright?

Copyright does not protect factual information or data, titles, short word combinations, names, characters, slogans, themes, plots, or ideas.

Some materials may be in the public domain or licensed with re-use rights (such as materials with a Creative Commons license).  You can search for such material using the Creative Commons search engine (link).

Who owns copyright in a work?

Usually, the creator of a work owns the copyright. However, copyright ownership may be transferred in certain cases (for example, to a publisher).

What kind of rights does the copyright owner have?

Copyright owners have the sole legal right to:

  • produce or reproduce the work
  • perform the work in public
  • publish the work
  • translate the work
  • adapt the work

A copyright owner can license any or all of these rights to someone else (individual or organization) temporarily, or assign them to another entity permanently.

How long does copyright last?

In Canada, copyright lasts for the creator’s lifetime, plus 50 years.

Is registering copyright optional or mandatory?

Copyright is automatic. A creator instantly has economic and moral rights over his/her work. Many choose to register copyright on their works as an added measure of protection. There’s more information about this on the CIPO website.

If a work doesn’t have the © symbol does that mean it’s not protected?

Yes, even without a © symbol the work can still be copyright protected. The symbol simply serves as a reminder.

How do I get permission to use someone’s work?

You ask. If your use is not permitted by a license, or one of the exceptions in the Copyright Act, you will need to ask the copyright owner for permission. Identify who the copyright owner is and whether there is an organization that represents the owner or if you can ask the owner directly. There are a number of copyright collectives which can give you permission (in the form of a license) on behalf of the copyright owner to use their work.

Remember that copyright owners have the right to say no, charge a fee or impose conditions on the use of their work.

Contact MHC’s copyright specialist (link to contact page) with any questions you might have about obtaining copyright permissions.

Copyright For Students

As a student, what can I legally copy?

As a student, you’re allowed to make a copy of an insubstantial part of a work for yourself for the purposes of education, private study, research, parody, satire, review, criticism or news reporting. Make sure the amount of what you copy is in line with MHC’s Fair Dealing Guidelines (link to Fair Dealing page).

Is there a limit to how much I can copy?

MHC follows a set of Fair Dealing Guidelines that outline how much material is fair for a student to copy. The Fair Dealing Guidelines can be found here (link to Fair Dealing page).

Can I use another person’s images/materials in my assignment or class presentation?

You may include another person’s work, including images, in your class presentations and assignments as long as you follow MHC’s Fair Dealing Guidelines (link to guidelines).

It is a great idea to look for material for your assignments that is licensed for re-use.  You can search for such material using the Creative Commons search engine (link).

Why am I not able to download or print an entire e-book?

Different publishers have different rules & licensing agreements about what can be done with e-books. These rules will vary depending on which e-book you are accessing. This should be indicated on the webpage that provides the Full Text link. If you have any questions feel free to ask someone at the Library Information Desk.

As a student, are works I create protected by copyright?

Yes.  As a creator your work is protected by copyright.

Copyright For Instructors

Is there a limit to how much I can copy?

Yes. If you are copying material for use in a course, fair dealing allows for limited copying of short excerpts of copyright protected works.  The Fair Dealing Guidelines can be found here (link to Fair Dealing page).

Can I make copies of copyright protected works to hand out to my students in class?

Yes. The Fair Dealing Guidelines allow you to make copies of another person’s works and hand them out to students enrolled in your course. The Fair Dealing Guidelines can be found here (link to Fair Dealing page).

What is fair dealing, and why should I care about it?

Read more about Fair Dealing here (link to Fair Dealing page).

Can I use copyright protected works for tests or exams?

Yes. Elaborate on this….

Are there any databases I can use for free (without worrying about copyright)?

A complete list of MHC Library database can be found here.  Any databases you see with the Open Access symbol next to their link indicate that they are an open access journal. That means that the articles within are open to use and their specific conditions will be indicated.

I’ve come across a recent journal article that I’d like to give out to my students.  Can I photocopy it and hand it out?

Probably. Under the Fair Dealing Guidelines you are allowed to make a copy of a single article from a journal to hand out to students.  You can review the Fair Dealing Guidelines here (link to Fair Dealing page).

However, if the library has a license agreement with the journal that prevents class handouts you may have to pay a royalty or find another way to make it accessible for your students. Check with the Copyright Specialist if you have any questions (link to contact).

What if a book I want to copy is out of print?

Being out of print does not mean that a book is no longer protected by copyright.  The same Fair Dealing Guidelines will apply (link to Fair Dealing page).

Why am I not able to download or print this entire e-book?

Different publishers have different licensing agreements and rules concerning what can be done with e-books. These rules will vary depending on which e-book you are accessing. This should be indicated on the webpage that provides the Full Text link. If you have any questions feel free to ask someone at the Library Information Desk.

Can I include copies of another person’s images & materials in my Power Point presentation?

You may include another person’s work, including images, in your class presentations as long as you follow MHC’s Fair Dealing Guidelines (link to guidelines). The same guidelines apply for posting material on Blackboard.

Is it okay to use images or other material from the internet for educational purposes?

Materials on the Internet are treated the same under copyright law as any other copyright protected materials.  If you want to use them without permission, they have to either fall within one of the Act’s exceptions (such as Fair Dealing –link to Fair Dealing Guidelines), or be open access or in the public domain.

Is everything on the internet fair game?

No. Most material found on the Internet is protected by copyright just like any other material (unless otherwise indicated).

Do I need to ask permission to link to a website?

Linking to a website is almost always okay.  Just make sure that the website is not posting content without the copyright owners permission.

Can I show a YouTube video in class?

Yes. If it looks as if the posted video may be an infringing copy you should look for a different video.

Can I play a TV News program in class?

Yes. Elaborate on this.

Can I use Netflix in the classroom?

No. The Netflix terms of service allow for personal use only.

Can my students perform a play in the classroom?

Yes. As long as the audience is mostly students.

Can I post copies of copyright protected work on Blackboard? Can I email copies to my students?

Yes & yes, as long as you are meeting the MHC Fair Dealing Guidelines (link to Fair Dealing page).

Can I upload a PDF of a journal article I obtained through the libraries databases to Blackboard?

Maybe. Check the license agreement on the article to make sure it allows for posting on LMS (Blackboard). The Copyright Specialist (link to contact) can help you determine that if you are having trouble.

Can I scan a print journal article or book chapter into a PDF and post on Blackboard?

Yes, as long as you are meeting the MHC Fair Dealing Guidelines (link to Fair Dealing page).

Can I embed YouTube videos to Blackboard?

Yes. However, if you suspect the material to be posted to YouTube without the owner’s consent, it’s best to find a legitimate, non-infringing video.

Can I post examples of my students’ work to Blackboard or on my personal website?

Maybe, if the student gives their consent. You can find the appropriate form here (link to forms page).

What materials can be scanned and placed on Library Reserve?

Articles, single book chapters, lecture notes, and any other material that qualifies for copying under the Fair Dealing Guidelines can be placed on reserve. You can review the process for course packs and reserves here (link to course pack page).

Can I play music in class?

Yes. The Copyright Act allows you to play a sound recording or live radio broadcasts in class for educational purposes (the audience must be mostly students).

Can I bring a movie from home or from the library to show in class?

Yes. If you have legally obtained a commercial copy of a movie you can play it for the purpose of education (the audience must be mostly students).


Image Source: 

Question by Jessica Lock from ththe Noun Project licensed under a  Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.