Copyright & Fair Use

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Copyright & Fair Use

Copyright and Fair Use for Teaching and Research.

The Israel’s Copyright Law,2007 delineates the legal protection for copyrighted materials in Israel.  According to the law only the creator of the material may publish, distribute, make copies, or present or broadcast to the public his material or a major part of it.

As a rule of thumb, it is forbidden to use copyrighted materials without written permission from the copyright owner in advance of use.  Copyrighted materials include books, articles, pictures, drawings, maps, music, videos, graphics and software applications, etc.

Licensing Agreements

Licensing agreements between the Technion and the publishers is an exception to the general prohibited use of protected materials without permission.  These agreements allow the entire Technion community to use journals, ebooks and databases available on the Library Portal for teaching and research in the Technion.

According to the licensing agreements it is forbidden to supply these materials to people outside the Technion community (except in accord with the Licensing Agreements).  Overall, these materials may not be used except for studying, teaching and research in the Technion. 
Anyone who does not abide by these rules, violates the copyright laws and is susceptible to legal proceedings by the copyright owner and also disciplinary proceedings by the Technion.
In addition, violation of the licensing agreement may lead to access limitations or total denial of access to the entire Technion community.

Fair Use

“Fair use” is the other exception to the general prohibited use of materials without advance permission.  This exception, outlined in paragraph 19, allows “fair use” for studying, teaching and research by the educational institution.

“Fair use” is defined, for example, as copying a moderate amount of protected material for research/education, making sure to acknowledge the source.  It is illegal to make distortions, damage, or changes of any kind to the copied material or any other action that could reduce the value of the material or the reputation/the name of the owner of the material.

“Fair use” attempts to balance the rights of the copyright owner with the needs of the user.  This principle is flexible and it is difficult to determine exactly when the use of material is “fair”.

In order to improve access to copyrighted materials for education and research while abiding by copyright laws, members of the Forum for Accessible Education have formulated a Code of Best Practices that provides clear rules for “fair use”.  The Code was adopted by all Israeli academic libraries (in Hebrew)

From the Code of Best Practices created by the Forum for Accessible Education, here are the main points that relate to access to digital documents for educational use (for example, electronic reserves, online syllabi or online documents on the course website):

Prior conditions

  • The materials must be required for a course in the Technion for its students.  The materials must be used in moderation and only to the extent needed for the course.

  • The materials are not available in any free internet sources.  If there is a free source of this material, use that source.

  • The Technion libraries MUST own one copy of the material. 

Access to materials

  • The materials are available via Moodle or a similar system, only for the duration of the course and exams and only to Technion students that have signed up for the course and the staff (administrative and academic) related to the course.  It is forbidden to distribute the materials or give access to anyone not mentioned here.

  • A notification of copyright ownership and the prohibition to distribute the information must be included.

Breadth of use that are considered “fair use”

Up to 1/5 of a book may be used; not only 1/5 in page amount, but also in ideas.Use of 1 article from a journal issue or an entire issue that is a collection of articlesIf a work cannot be divided (for example, a picture, a chart, a diagram, a song), it may be used in its entirety.This is only a sample of rules.  Whenever you are uncertain if you are abiding by the “fair use” rules, please contact the Elyachar Central Library director.  He will convey your questions to the committee that the university vice-president appointed.With every use of the materials, credit must be given to the author/creator.


“Copyright” is a term that refers to the laws regarding the use and distribution of original materials. Regarding articles, the copyright belongs to the authors.

Publication of an article in a journal constitutes “use and distribution” and therefore, necessitates the agreement of the author.

During the publishing process, today it is customary to transfer all or part of the copyright ownership from the author to the publisher.

In this way, the author may lose control over the article and will have to ask permission from the publisher any time he uses his own article. This could include loading the article onto his personal or his university websites, sharing the article on academic websites, depositing the article in a university, institutional or personal archive.

My article- my copyright?

In order to find out what your options are regarding an article that you already published, check the contract that you signed with the publisher.

You can find copyright information on the publishers’ websites. You can also check the SHERPA/RoMEO website to see the copyright conventions for multiple publishers.

Keep hold of your rights!

In the academic world today, the tendency is to encourage authors to keep the ownership of their articles (backed by the Movement for Open Access). One way to do this is to add an Author Addendum to the publisher’s contract. This addendum delineates which rights remain with the author once his article is published.

A second option is to request to sign a License to Publish in place of a contract. This document allows the publisher to publish the article but leaves the copyrights with the authors.

Share your work

Once the author is sure that he owns his article, he may archive it and then deposit a copy of it on an Open Access platform.

Creative Commons licensing allow the author to decide what he allows the public to do with his article and under which conditions.

Open Access Publishing (OA)

OA is an academic publishing mechanism, in which research products (articles, books, theses etc.) are available for free to download.

For useful information about OA publishing and all important considerations please visit our designated page.

For more details:

“The Scholar’s Copyright Addendum” Engine (SCAE)

Information about “Sherpa-RoMEO JULIET”

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