As mentioned on the Copyright Exceptions page, Irish copyright law grants exemptions that allow limited use of copyrighted material by students, teachers and other education staff under certain conditions. In addition to this, there is a licence that permits the use of certain copyrighted material for educational purposes, above and beyond the exceptions granted by law. The licence itself contains conditions and restrictions.
What Can You Copy
- Anything you own the copyright on
- Anything in the public domain
- Anything for which the copyright has expired
- Anything for which you have the permission of the copyright holder
- Anything covered by the ICLA FE licence (below)
- Anything permitted by fair dealing
The Irish Copyright Licencing Agency Licence
The Irish Copyright Licencing Agency (ICLA) is a licensing body as defined by the 2000 Copyright Act which licences the use of print and digital works to educational establishments and other organisations. The licence allows for copying, subject to some restrictions, from Irish and overseas publications. The ICLA is a not-for-profit organisation and the money generated by licences is distributed to authors and other creators of copyrighted content.
There is a licence for further education, which allows you to use materials from the content listed below in lectures without having seek permission:
- Digital versions of the above.
The licence permits copying of:
- Up to 5% or one chapter of a book (whichever is greater).
- One short story or poem from an anthology, not exceeding 10 pages in length.
- The whole or part of one article from a journal periodical or newspaper issue.
- The equivalent amount from the digital versions of the above.
Note that these only apply to items owned by your institution directly or is accessible through an institutional subscription.
It does not include:
This doesn't mean that you can't copy them - remember fair dealing? - just that the licence doesn't cover these works; you can't go ahead and copy sheet music and then say that the ICLA licence lets you do this - it doesn't.
Quoting the licence, "Licensed Copies may be supplied to Distance Learners wherever they are located and Distance Learners may make a copy of a Licensed Copy in order to view it at a more convenient time." No distinction is made between soft and hard copies of material.
Protecting Your Own Work
Unless there are special circumstances - such as being created in the course of your job - you are the copyright holder of your own work. This is enshrined in the Copyright Act (see sections 21-23). Copyright is applied automatically - you don't have to do anything to register it. To state and prove copyright you should keep a hard copy of your work, and state on it that you are asserting your ownership rights. Do this by including a copyright statement. This has three parts:
- The copyright symbol ©.
- The year of publication (or multiple years if content has been added over a range of years).
- Your name.
An optional fourth element is the inclusion of a statement of rights, which normally comes in three forms:
- "All rights reserved", indicating that you are keeping all rights to your material.
- "Some rights reserved, indicating that you allow some use of your materials under some circumstances - used in conjunction with open licences.
- "No rights reserved", indicating that you are releasing the work into the public domain.
Putting all four elements together, you'd have something like:
© 2015-2021 Catelyn Stark. All rights reserved.
The copyright statement should be displayed in such a way to make users aware that that your work is copyrighted. In a book or ebook, the copyright statement should be on a page at the front of the book. For a webpage, you should have a copyright statement at the bottom of every page. YouTube - and other - videos should have a copyright notice in the video description or video credits. Photos and images should have a watermark or have a copyright statement in their description.
If you're using "Some rights reserved", you should clearly indicate what may be done with your work. Again, consider an open licence such as a Creative Commons licence, if you're happy to waive some rights.
Note that even if you do make your work available on the web with a clearly worded copyright statement, people will still copy your work - it's simply human nature. If you do want to protect your work do not upload it to the web.