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Dahlgren Memorial Library

Copyright for Online or Virtual Classroom

Video Use

When using commercial videos or movies, it needs to be directly part of the lesson and cannot be the entire movie. The recommendation is to not play an entire movie but a scene or two directly relating to the session materials is generally acceptable. 

Please see DML Resources available to learn more about DML materials that are available for educational purposes

Please see Non-DML Resources available to learn more about non-DML materials that are available for educational purposes 

Copyright Language Surrounding Video Use

One of an author’s exclusive economic rights is to perform a work publicly. That includes playing audio visual works like movies.

They have the right to “Transmit or otherwise communicate a performance of copyrighted work to public by means of any device or process, whether members of the public capable of receiving performance, receive it at same place or separate places and at same or different times." (US Copyright Office, Title 17)

  • Where movies are defined as images in any sequence or making accompanying sounds audible.
  • Where the public is defined as any place where a substantial number of persons outside a circle of family and friends can gather.


The purpose of this guide is to provide resources and information for resolving copyright questions. This research guide does not supply legal advice nor is it intended to replace the advice of legal counsel.