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Copyright Resource Guide

A guide intended to provide information and guidance related to copyright for the FCC Community.

Copyright Questions?


Copyright Question Image


For guidance or questions, please contact the Copyright Resource Officer, Colleen McKnight, Director of Library Services.

FCC Copyright Policy and Procedure


This guide is to provide information regarding copyright for Frederick Community College, and should not be considered legal advice. The user of this information retains legal responsibility for all decisions on copyright matters.

Links to resources on other websites are for convenience and are not endorsements. FCC is not responsible for information provided on other websites.

Before You Get Permission

So you have some copyrighted material you might need permission to use. Let's go through the questions you should ask before starting:

1. Have you done a fair use assessment? 

2. Is this the only material that will work for your given circumstance?

3. Does the college have this or an equivalent material under license you could use?

4. Is there material available on the open web or under a creative commons license that you could use instead? 

5. If this is the work you want to use, can you determine who owns the copyright? 

If you aren't sure the answer to any of these questions, just ask the Copyright Resource Officer for guidance.

Once you've answered these questions fully, and you still want to use the material you have found, then it's time to get permission.

Asking for Copyright Permission

Once you have determined the copyright owner, it is time to contact them and ask permission. Sometimes that can be as simply as sending an email, and following up with a more formal permission letter. Sometimes it requires contacting a rights licensing site and paying for permission.

For whatever the type of permission needed, Columbia University has an excellent guide, providing step-by-step instructions, and some model letters to use when asking for copyright permission.

Submit a Copy of Your Permission Form

Once you have received written copyright permission, as per the FCC Copyright Policy and Procedure, you will need to keep a copy of the written permission for yourself, and submit a digital copy of the written permission through the College Copyright Documentation Form, linked below:

Common Rights Management Companies

Below you'll find links to agencies that deal with providing rights to the most commonly used materials in an educational setting. If you have copyrighted material, but are having problems identifying where to go to receive and/or pay for permission, please contact the Copyright Resource Officer.

Rights to Copy Chapters in Books and Journal Articles

Rights to Perform or Use Music

Rights to Show Movies Outside of a Classroom Setting

Frederick Community College prohibits discrimination against any person on the basis of age, ancestry, citizenship status, color, creed, ethnicity, gender identity and expression, genetic information, marital status, mental or physical disability, national origin, race, religious affiliation, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status in its activities, admissions, educational programs, and employment.