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P2P Copyright Network Training Dashboard: First Sale & Library Exceptions

P2P Network Training Dashboard

First Sale and Library Exceptions: Syllabus

Syllabus: First Sale and Library Exceptions  * Interlibrary loan  * Exceptions for preservation and access  * Unmonitored reproductions in libraries

Video: Bobbs-Merrill v. Straus


don't forget these ground rules 


These apply to all types of library and archives copying and distribution

  • The library’s collection is open to the public OR available to outside researchers
  • Copying and distribution is NOT for any purpose of direct or indirect commercial advantage
  • Each instance of copying is isolated from and unrelated to any prior copying and includes no more than one copy, except three copies are allowed for preservation or replacement purposes.
  • The copy includes the “notice of copyright” appearing on the original, OR if no notice can be found on the original, a legend “stating that the work may be protected by copyright.”
  • The material copied and distributed is NOT a musical, sculptural, graphic, motion picture, or audiovisual work

UNLESS for these reasons

  • The copying and distribution is solely for preservation or replacement; or
  • The audiovisual work contains or deals with “news;” or
  • A graphic would be copied and distributed as an illustration or adjunct to a work that may be copied for patrons or for interlibrary loan 


Video: Kirtsaeng

First Sale and Library Exceptions: Slides

Section 108: Explained

scroll through the tabs: section 108 

Unpublished Works Published Works
  • Meet the Ground Rules
  • The three copies are solely for preservation and security, OR for deposit for research use in another qualifying library
  • The copyrighted work is currently in the collection of the copying library
  • “Digital” copies are not distributed or made available to the public outside of the “premises” of the library or archives
  • Meet the Ground Rules
  • The three copies are solely for replacement of a work that is “damaged, deteriorating, lost, or stolen, or if the existing format of the work has become obsolete.”
  • The library has determined through reasonable efforts that an unused replacement for the original work cannot be obtained at a “fair price.”
  • “Digital “copies are not distributed or made available to the public outside of the “premises” of the library or archives “in lawful possession of such copy.”
  • Note: A format is obsolete IF the machine or device that makes the work usable is “no longer manufactured” or “reasonably available in the commercial marketplace.” 


Articles & Portions
  • Meet the Ground Rules
  • The copy is made from the collection at the library from which the user requests it OR from another library’s collection such as through interlibrary loan
  • The copy becomes the user’s property
  • The library has no information that the copy would be used for other than private study, scholarship, or research
  • The library displays a copyright “warning” notice where orders are accepted and on order forms
  • And in addition, if the copy is a large portion or entire work… 
  • The library has determined through a reasonable investigation that a copy of the original copyrighted work cannot be obtained at a “fair price.”



  • Section 108 absolves the library from liability for the unsupervised use of “reproducing equipment” on its premises, provided that the library displays a notice on the reproducing equipment indicating that making a copy may be subject to copyright law.


Published Works
  • Meet the Ground Rules
  • The library concludes that the work is within the last 20 years of copyright protection
  • The work is copied, displayed, distributed, or performed for preservation, scholarship, or research

Unless the library first determines by “reasonable investigation” that…

  • The work is subject to “normal commercial exploitation. A copy can be obtained at a “reasonable price.”
  • The owner provides “notice” that either of the previous conditions apply.



  • Interlibrary loan cannot result in “such aggregate quantities as to substitute for a subscription or purchase of such a work.”  
  • In 1979, the National Commission on New Technological Uses of Copyright Works (CONTU) guidelines issued guidelines that suggested that libraries pay a fee or buy a subscription after receiving up to five copies of articles from the most recent five years of a journal title during one calendar year. Many libraries in the U.S. follow these guidelines.