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Copyright Basics: Fair Use

The Four Factors:

If you are challenged on your claim of Fair Use, judges will consider the following factors.  The more factors in your favor, the better your case.  Making a good faith effort to conform to the Fair Use criteria is important.

1. the purpose of your use 

2. the nature of the work 

3. the amount and substantiality of the portion taken

4. the effect of your use upon the potential market

Learn more about the four factors HERE on Stanford University's Libraries excellent webpage describing the evaluation process.

Want more info?  Check out these sites:

From the U.S. Copyright Office:


Not sure if your use is Fair Use?

Click HERE for this easy-to-use tool that will help you decide if your use is Fair Use.

Still not sure?

If you are still not sure whether your use is Fair Use, feel free to contact me.  I'd be happy to help.


-- Thanks to Nora E. Galbraith, Resource Sharing Librarian at Florida Southern College's Roux Library for help with this Guide.

-- The information in this Guide is provided for educational purposes.  It is not legal advice.