Answered By: Matt Laidlow
Last Updated: Jun 10, 2024     Views: 4

Does citing a copyright protected work make it okay to copy it?

No. Citing the source of a work you use is good academic practice and helps you avoid plagiarism, but citation alone does not mean you are permitted to copy the work. 

In order to legally copy a copyright protected work for use in teaching materials, assignments, or theses, your use must be permitted by one of the following: 

  • explicit permission from the copyright owner; 
  • use of an “insubstantial” amount, e.g. a typical short quote of a few sentences; 
  • a users’ rights exception in the Copyright Act, such as fair dealing; 
  • the terms of a license, like those the MRU Library has for ejournals and ebooks; or 
  • the terms of an open license, such as a Creative Commons license, applied to the work by its copyright owner 

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