University of Nebraska Medical Center

Applying Copyright in Online Learning Environments (ALA) with Gretchen McCord ALA Webinar

Date: Wednesday, March 9th
Location: Sorrell (MSC), room 1005
Time: 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.


In this workshop, lawyer and librarian Gretchen McCord will break down the elements of course management system (CMS) use and help you assess risk and analyze copyright law to ensure your CMS is within copyright regulations.

Online platforms have become the base of operation for instruction for both face-to-face classes and distance education; yet current copyright law does not provide direct guidance on what you can legally upload into your CMS. The situation can be compounded by aggressive copyright holders who may restrict uses that are in fact within your rights as an educator. Applying law developed for physical materials to digital is often messy, and the licenses that commonly govern born-digital works make it more so. McCord will illuminate facets of copyright law that will help you make informed decisions about what materials you can upload to your online learning environment.

You will learn:

  • How to apply fair use and other copyright exceptions to your decision making
  • How to make sound analogies from court decisions on brick-and-mortar cases
  • How to assess risk when using copyright-protected content

Gretchen McCord is an attorney and librarian, focusing on intellectual property in digital formats. Previously an academic librarian, she practiced law for 9 years before starting her legal advising and training consultancy. She has taught as an adjunct at both university and community college levels in the areas of copyright, privacy, trademark, and First Amendment law. A frequent speaker, she is the author of Copyright in Cyberspace: Questions and Answers for Librarians, What You Need to Know About Privacy Law: A Guide for Librarians and Educators, and Fair Use: The Secrets No One Tells You.

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