Thursday, November 3, 2011

Week 2 Wimba: Copyright Issues

In the past I have used videos to teach lessons such as purpose, honesty, metamorphosis, etc. I have even used made-for-TV movies that were applicable to what I was teaching in literature. A few years ago I had an administrator inform me that I was no longer allowed to use movies to teach lessons due to copyright laws. I have to admit that I was angered and frustrated with the law and the administrator; however, now that I have taken this course, I recognize that I have purchased the license to the movie to show for my own personal viewing, and I do not have permission to show it to a classroom audience. I am not sure if it would fall into the fair use policy if I only showed a portion of the movie in order to teach a lesson. For example, I like to use “A Bug’s Life” in order to teach metamorphosis. That segment of the movie is no more than five minutes, so I wonder if that would fall under fair use; however, the point might be that I certainly could teach the subject without the movie, so I guess not. I would think that it would be beneficial to Disney if by showing the movie it would generate interest in its purchase.


  1. Wayne, I can totally understand the frustration you felt. Copyright law came about because it was reacting to how people were using intellectual property wrongly. The laws are ever-changing and also continuously reacting to technology advancements. I do believe however that if you use a portion of the movie, like a 5 minute scene, you would be able to use the media under fair use.

  2. The frustration is totally understandable because the movie clip is probably a wonderful illustration of metamorphosis and the law should allow for this, but, well, their first interest is protecting their assets, not some educational/cultural thing. Man, the system is so broke.