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Fair Use News

The folks at the Center for Social Media at American University, who earned deserved plaudits a year ago in connection with their “Statement of Best Practices in Fair Use” for Documentary Filmmakers, are about to release a follow-up study:  Recut, Reframe, Recycle: Quoting Copyrighted Material in User-Generated Video.”  (Follow the link to a variety of resources related to the study, including links to representative videos.)  The study is descriptive; it suggests that a variety of uses of copyrighted material in today’s online videos are eligible for fair use consideration, based on their classification as satire, parody, negative and positive commentary, discussion-triggers, illustration, diaries, archiving and of course, pastiche or collage (remixes and mashups).  (I’m quoting and paraphrasing here from the study website.)  The study recommends a follow-up project to develop “best practices” principles for fair use in these contexts.