MCCCD Copyright Guidelines


It is the policy of the Maricopa County Community College District to respect the rights of copyright owners and to follow the Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. § 101 et seq. The MCCCD Copyright Guidelines present the District's position regarding use of copyrighted works. Copyright law is complex and still unsettled on many issues, especially in the educational arena. The Guidelines should keep you within the law, but there are no guarantees. Every person who uses District resources should abide by these Guidelines. Failure to follow the Guidelines may create individual liability for copyright infringement.

Guidelines in a Nutshell

The Guidelines are designed to help MCCCD faculty, staff and students abide by copyright laws and to inform them of their rights and responsibilities under copyright law. The Guidelines provide direction for using potentially copyrighted materials in general and in specific media. The Guidelines, in a nutshell, teach:

  • Not all educational uses are "fair uses." Whether a proposed use qualifies as a fair use depends upon the facts of the case. Fair use is discussed in detail in the Fair Use section of the Guidelines.
  • Public domain works are available for all to use without restriction. Public domain works include older works or works created by the federal government. Unless a work was published before 1923, you should presume it is copyrighted. If it was published after March 1, 1989, it is almost certainly copyrighted. A detailed description of public domain works is set forth in the Public Domain section of the Guidelines.
  • If the material is copyrighted and the use is not a fair use, you must obtain permission to use the material. Some contact information and a form for obtaining Permission are set forth below.
  • When dealing with issues of attribution, destruction or other changes to works of visual arts, the artist's moral rights may also need to be cleared.

Use of MCCCD Resources

MCCCD resources may only be used to reproduce or otherwise use copyrighted material as permitted under the Guidelines. MCCCD resources are broadly defined to include photocopiers, computer terminals and servers. Examples of uses that may fall outside the Guidelines include copying software without permission, file swapping over the Internet and photocopying. Note that MCCCD's Computing Resource Standards specifically prohibit the use of MCCCD computing resources to infringe copyrights or other intellectual property rights.

Page Updated 05/20/14